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Welcome to the interactive web schedule for the 2019 Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference! Please note, this event has passed. To return to the main Conference website, go to: www.midwestfw.org.

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CONFERENCE SCHEDULE UPDATES & CHANGES: As a result of the prolonged government shutdown, we experienced a number of cancellations and changes to the schedule. Cancellations and changes are listed here (as of January 26, 2019). 

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Poster [clear filter]
Tuesday, January 29
 

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P23) Conserving Yukon Caribou: Use of Genetics to Inform Herd Assignment and Conservation Designations
AUTHORS. My H. Hoang, Khoa T. Nguyen, Dominic H. Saidu, Karen H. Mager – Earlham College

ABSTRACT. The Yukon Territories, Canada is home to multiple caribou herds with overlapping ranges and great variation in size and migratory behavior. While many populations have been declining, others are stable, increasing, or not yet assessed. Many smalll herds’ ranges overlap with the territories of large or increasing herds. Recent conservation efforts in Canada rely heavily on ecotype designation, which can group the threatened herds with stable and increasing herds. A herd’s designatable unit can influence the conservation activities for a particular herd, regardless of its population trend. Given such challenges, the use of genetic tools to differentiate between caribou herds is crucial for contributing to conservation assessment. Previous literature has begun to characterize these herds using a population genetics approach; however, a more comprehensive study with increased sample sizes and number of loci would increase confidence in results. Therefore, our research goals are: 1) to distinguish Yukon caribou herds based on genetic patterns; 2) to construct a reliable genetic assignment method for herd identification of unknown captured caribou and 3) to compare Alaskan and Canadian caribou. Here, we extracted DNA from more than 150 samples of three specimen types: whole blood, fecal pellets, and dried blood on filter paper, and amplified them using PCR at 18 microsatellite loci. These data were combined with an existing dataset of 655 Alaskan caribou. Our ongoing research is using the STRUCTURE clustering approach and pairwise Jost’s D, along with other tools, to determine the genetic population structure within and among herds. This research will help wildlife managers to determine which designatable unit each caribou herd should belong to, especially the Fortymile and Nelchina herds which are yet to be classified. It will also aid wildlife managers faced with unknown harvest in determining whether genetic assignment is a viable approach.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P27) Testing of a Respiration Model for Hybridized Coregonines
AUTHORS. Kevin Keeler, Five Rivers Services LLC; Zach Rekowski, Eastern Michigan University; Ellen George, Cornell University; Chuck Madenjian, USGS Great Lakes Science Center; Wendy Stott, Michigan State University

ABSTRACT. Hybridization is fairly common among some fish genera, yet it has been uncommon to create bioenergetics models for hybridized species. Coregonines utilize a wide range of habitats across the Great Lakes, and have undergone numerous historical perturbations but also recent restoration efforts. Two species with restoration interest, lake whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) and cisco (Coregonus artedi), contrast one another in habitat preference, population levels across lakes, and commercial availability, also hybridize. If each of these species populations continue to increase with population and habitat restoration efforts, then it is likely that additional individuals and habitat overlap will further allow for hybridization. While there are bioenergetics models for lake whitefish, and the deepwater coregonine bloater (Coregonus hoyi), there is no developed cisco bioenergetics model, let alone a hybridized model. A generalized coregonid model does exist, but still utilizes the same respiration components as bloater. Herein, we used a laboratory study to determine a new respiration model for hybridized cisco and lake whitefish. Gametes were collected from fishes in the Les Cheneaux Islands of Lake Huron during the fall of 2015. After incubation, hatching, and rearing of larvae, it was determined there was a hybridization cross of these species. Age-2 individuals underwent respiration trials in a 185-L swim chamber to determine oxygen consumption rate. Results of these trials could be utilized for comparison with pure cisco individuals while also furthering studies if hybridization becomes more common with restoration.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P41) Cheese vs. Worms: A Comparison of Minnow Trap Bait Types for Assessing Nearshore Fish Communities
AUTHORS. Scott Jackson, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences; Edward Roseman, US Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Jason Fischer, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences; Stacey Ireland, US Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center; Stacy Provo, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences

ABSTRACT. Minnow traps are a common type of passive fishing gear that can be deployed in a variety of habitats to assess local fish communities. While some studies investigated the efficiency and biases associated with this type of sampling, few studies have assessed the effects of baiting minnow traps with different types of bait. As part of a shoreline restoration project, we conducted bi-weekly minnow trap sampling from spring to fall 2016 in the St. Clair River. Minnow traps were set from the shore in groups of five parallel to the shoreline at 12 different sites along the river. Each trap was baited with Colby Jack cheese one night of the week, and Nightcrawler worms (Lumbricus terrestris) the other. Traps were set late afternoon to early evening and were fished for an average of 13.9 hours/night. Traps baited with cheese caught 1497 individuals belonging to 23 species and traps baited with worms caught 901 individuals from 22 species. Four species were only caught by cheese baited traps and three species were only caught by worm baited traps. Catch-Per-Unit-Effort (CPUE) was calculated for the number of fish caught at a site over a 12-hour sampling period. CPUE of cheese baited traps was higher (6.5 Fish/12 Hours) than worm baited traps (4.1 Fish/12 Hours) (p-value <0.01). Mean species richness (MSR), calculated as the average number of species caught per sampling event, was greater for traps baited with cheese (1.91 species/night) than for traps with worms (1.59 species/night) (p-value<0.01). Based on CPUE and MSR, cheese catches more individuals and more species than worms, however, using both bait types may provide a more complete measure of species richness by catching species attracted to only one type of bait.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P44) Effects of Sedation Techniques on Stress Responses in Bluegill Sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus)
AUTHORS. Margaret Thomas, Eastern Illinois University; Anabela Maia, Rhode Island College; Eloy Martinez, Eastern Illinois University; Robert Colombo, Eastern Illinois University

ABSTRACT. The process of sedating fish is necessary for a variety of procedures in research and within field or laboratory settings. Information regarding chemical sedatives, such as MS-222 (99.5% tricaine methanesulfate), suggests that it is often insufficient for field use due to extensive recovery time and withdrawal. Subsequently, alternatives to chemical sedatives are being explored, of which electronarcosis is a popular option. Electronarcosis applies particularly to “immediate-release” situations, as it is found to have rapid recovery times and minimal lasting effects on fish. Few studies provide an overview of the effects of sedation on its subjects, and large gaps remain with regard to the species-specific responses to the treatment. Therefore, we sought to compare the short-term physiological effects of bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) subjected to electronarcosis and MS-222 sedation techniques. We hypothesize that sedation achieved by electronarcosis will provide an overall decreased stress response in its subjects. Bluegill sunfish were exposed to species-specific doses of MS-222 or electrical stunning to achieve complete sedation. Immediately following sedation, basal metabolic rates of fish were monitored with indirect calorimetry. Basal metabolic rates were employed as indicators of aerobic physiological activity on fish. Cortisol levels in blood were assayed after metabolic screening and gathered over a period of 1, 2, 4, and 6 hours following treatment on each group and compared to a pre-treatment control. Plasma cortisol levels and metabolic rates are expected to have an overall decreased value in subjects treated with electrosedation, deeming it a more practical alternative to chemical treatments.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P45) Influence of Physical Processes on Transport and Persistence of eDNA from the Invasive Round Goby (Neogobious melanostomus)
AUTHORS. Meredith B. Nevers, Murulee N. Byappanahalli, Kasia Kelly – U.S. Geological Survey; Charles C. Morris, Joshua Dickey – National Park Service

ABSTRACT. Environmental DNA (eDNA) is being explored in a variety of fishery sciences applications: early detection of invasive species, population estimations, or whole community composition.  Questions remain, however, about factors that influence the reliability of eDNA for detecting recent occupation of habitats by a given species.  It is unclear how physical and biological factors (settling, resuspension, dispersion, DNA stability and decay) influence estimations of eDNA concentration.  In a series of field and mesocosm experiments, we examined the transport, accumulation, and persistence of eDNA from the invasive round goby (Neogobius melanostomus).  Experiment 1: caged fish (n=30) were placed in a stream devoid of round goby, and water (1L) and sediment samples (~20g) were collected over 24 hours along a 120-m stretch of the stream.  Sampling continued for 24 hours after fish were removed. Experiment 2: round goby (n=5/tank) were placed in laboratory aquaria, and water (150mL) and sediment (~20g) were collected over 21 days plus another 28 days post-fish removal.  DNA was extracted from all samples, and qPCR was used to target DNA sequences (cytochrome oxidase I gene, COI, specific to round goby).  Results indicated that goby eDNA was readily transported downstream, with signals detected at all sites, but the signal disappeared rapidly after fish removal.  Similarly, eDNA was regularly detected in lab aquaria, but the signal disappeared rapidly in both matrices after fish removal.  Results show that eDNA acts conservatively as an indicator, and detection of an eDNA target would likely indicate recent occupation by the species.  eDNA technology holds great potential for species detection, including those that are hard-to-capture or less abundant in aquatic habitats.  Further research is needed to evaluate resuspension and shoreline interactions in the Great Lakes and how DNA responds to other environmental processes and conditions.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P47) Pre-Restoration Fishery and Macroinvertebrate Assessment of the River Rouge Area of Concern
AUTHORS. James Beaubien, US Geological Survey; Jason Fischer, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences ; Robin DeBruyne, University of Toledo, Department of Environmental Sciences; Rose Ellison, US Environmental Protection Agency; Hal Harrington, US Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District; Edward Roseman, US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT. The River Rouge is located in southeastern Michigan and is a tributary to the Detroit River. The river and its watershed have been severely degraded resulting in a Great Lakes Area of Concern designation with beneficial use impairments for all biota and habitat. The lower reach contains 6.4 km of concrete river channel that is unsuitable habitat for game fish, sensitive macroinvertebrates, and other native fauna. The removal of this concrete channel will mitigate some beneficial use impairments (e.g., degradation of fish and wildlife populations, degradation of aesthetics, degradation of benthos, loss of fish and wildlife habitat) in the system, however establishment of baseline environmental conditions is needed prior to habitat restoration to measure the effectiveness of restoration efforts. We sampled fish and macroinvertebrate communities at 12 sample sites; 3 sites upriver of the concrete channel, 6 sites within the concrete channel, and 3 sites below the concrete channel. Boat electrofishing surveys across all sites indicated diversity among fish assemblages was low, dominated by emerald shiners (63% numerically) and only 16% game fish (e.g. Centrarchidae, northern pike, white bass). Benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages were sampled with colonization samplers (3 Hester-Dendy and 3 rock bags per site). Colonization samplers were set in June and September and allowed to soak for 30 days before being retrieved. Macroinvertebrates were identified to the lowest taxonomic classification and enumerated. Preliminary results indicate that the macroinvertebrate community composition was dominated by Chironomidae and Oligochaeta across all sites. These results provide baseline information on aquatic community structure to measure post-restoration community response to replacement of the concrete channel with natural river morphology.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fishing/Field Surveys

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P58) White Bass Population Dynamics in a South Central Missouri Reservoir
AUTHORS. Joey Root, Southeast Missouri State University; Dave Knuth, Missouri Department of Conservation; Sara Tripp, Missouri Department of Conservation; John Scheibe, Southeast Missouri State University

ABSTRACT. The White Bass (Morone chrysops) is an important sport fish species in Missouri’s large reservoirs. As a result of this, understanding White Bass population dynamics is critical for both developing and implementing appropriate management strategies. In recent years anglers have voiced concerns about declining White Bass catches at Wappapello Lake. Thus, we will be evaluating population dynamics of White Bass in a South Central Missouri reservoir. To collect a representative sample of the White Bass population, we will be setting experimental gill nets in the fall of 2018 and 2019. Sagittal otoliths will be removed from 200 White Bass each year. The age estimates will be used to determine which variables have an influence on white bass recruitment, growth, and mortality, such as reservoir hydrology, spring weather patterns, and exploitation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P69) Validation of the Modeling Methodology for Projecting the Spawning Location of Grass Carp Ctenopharyngodon Idella in the Sandusky River
AUTHORS. Patrick M. Kocovsky, US Geological Survey; Nicole R. King, University of Toledo; Eric Weimer, Ohio Department of Natural Resources; Christine M. Mayer, University of Toledo; Song S. Qian, University of Toledo

ABSTRACT. Spawning of Grass Carp Ctenopharyngodon idella in the Great Lakes basin was verified when eight genetically-confirmed, fertilized eggs were collected in the Sandusky River, a tributary to Lake Erie, in June and July 2015. Researchers predicted the fertilization location for those eggs was ~3.9 ± 1 km downstream of Ballville Dam between the State Street and Hayes Avenue bridges within the city limits of Fremont, Ohio. In June 2018, two pieces of evidence permitted verification of the model-predicted spawning location. First, fertilized Grass Carp eggs were collected at several sites from 3.3 km to 18 km downstream of the predicted spawning area 11-14 June. We used water temperature measured in the field at time of capture, developmental stage (± 1 stage) determined by microscopic examination, and published curves relating developmental time to water temperature to estimate time since fertilization for several hundred eggs. We then subtracted developmental time from capture time for each egg to determine the time the egg was fertilized and created a histogram of fertilization times. Second, two mature, diploid female and 14 mature, diploid male Grass Carp were captured by electrofishing conducted within the predicted spawning area during a prescribed management action conducted 12-14 June. Histograms of egg fertilization times overlapped with collection times for mature Grass Carp in the model-projected spawning area, providing additional evidence of the location of the spawning area and validating the modeling method used.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P70) Abundance of Invasive Rusty Crayfish by eDNA and Traditional Survey in View of Fish Assemblages and Habitat Quality
AUTHORS. Kasia Kelly, Meredith B. Nevers, Murulee N. Byappanahalli – U.S. Geological Survey; Charles C. Morris, Joshua Dickey – National Park Service; Dawn Shively, Ashley Spoljaric – Michigan State University

ABSTRACT. Introduced rusty crayfish (Orconectes rusticus) are frequently found in Lake Michigan tributaries during routine fish surveys.  While some locations are heavily occupied by the invasive crayfish, others support only small populations or resist invasion.  Certain streams may be more likely to attract establishment of rusty crayfish populations due to habitat type, existing fish communities, or other biotic and abiotic conditions.  Current monitoring for crayfish in rivers includes laborious sampling such as electroshocking or trapping, but the use of environmental DNA (eDNA) may present a more efficient method. While eDNA has the advantage of broader spatial coverage with less intense effort, the relationship between eDNA estimates and traditional surveys must be established. We explored the relationship between eDNA and electroshocking for detection and quantification of rusty crayfish, along with the interactions with habitat and water quality assessments and fish community surveys. The goal was to assess the usefulness of targeted eDNA in stream surveys and to attempt to model future invasion potential. Copy numbers of rusty crayfish DNA marker by quantitative PCR (qPCR) were positively correlated with electroshocking catch (Pearson R= 0.747, P= 0.033) and crayfish biomass (Pearson R= 0.845, P= 0.008).  The eDNA assay for rusty crayfish discerned between highly and scarcely infested sites in streams of northern Indiana. Fish assemblage data revealed similar species composition in infested and non-infested sites, frequently including green sunfish, creek chub, white sucker, rainbow and brown trout.  Neither eDNA marker nor crayfish count by electroshocking was correlated with any of the water chemistry measures or habitat quality scores, implying that rusty crayfish is highly adaptable to different habitat conditions. Future efforts will include development of a predictive model using the habitat data and fish species composition to predict the future spatial and temporal spread of rusty crayfish between watersheds.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P72) Introducing the electrified dozer trawl for sampling Silver Carp and fish communities in a lotic system
AUTHORS. Jeremy Hammen, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Columbia Fish & Wildlife Conservation Office; Emily Pherigo, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Columbia Fish & Wildlife Conservation Office; Jason Goeckler, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Columbia Fish & Wildlife Conservation Office

ABSTRACT. Successful fish management depends on the ability to quickly and accurately assess populations. This can be challenging when managing invasive species, like Silver Carp, due to the difficulty in capturing these species. Conventional gears can be limited in their ability to efficiently achieve these assessments yet these conventional methods continue to be used, risking the ability to accurately assess a population in a cost effective way. To help address these challenges, an electrified dozer trawl was developed that combined conventional boat electrofishing with a rigid-frame push net. We compared catch rates, size structures, and species diversity from conventional boat electrofishing catch with the electrified dozer trawl in tributaries of the Missouri River, Missouri, to determine which technique more efficiently and precisely assesses a Silver Carp population. The electrified dozer trawl completed sampling transects in nearly half the time and captured twice as many Silver Carp as conventional boat electrofishing. Therefore, it could be included as an assessment tool. Additional benefits of the electrified dozer trawl could extend beyond Silver Carp into the management of native and sportfish. For example, species richness and species accumulation curves were similar between the two gears indicating the potential for use in assessing fish community. Applications for the electrified dozer trawl could benefit fisheries management for several species in many different environments and needs to be explored.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(CANCELLED) (P83) Routine Respiration Rates of Larval and Juvenile Lake Sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens)
AUTHORS. Taaja R. Tucker, University of Toledo; Kevin Keeler, Five Rivers Services LLC; Edward Roseman, U.S. Geological Survey; Dylan Jones, U.S. Geological Survey; Scott Jackson, University of Toledo; Stacey Ireland, US Geological Survey

ABSTRACT. The lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens), a state-listed threatened species in Michigan, is a focal species targeted for recovery in the St. Clair-Detroit River System (SCDRS). Since the early 2000s, spawning habitat restoration projects have been completed in seven locations throughout the SCDRS to increase recruitment of lake sturgeon in the system.  Little is known about the feeding habits and the energy requirements of early-life stage lake sturgeon in the SCDRS. Bioenergetics models allow for the creation of energy budgets for individual fish and can extrapolated to fish populations. While bioenergetics models exist for several species and life stages of sturgeon, one has not yet been developed for young lake sturgeon. Measurement of respiration rates is integral to the generation of bioenergetics models. To determine oxygen consumption rates, fertilized lake sturgeon eggs were collected from the St. Clair River, Michigan and reared in the laboratory at the USGS Great Lakes Science Center under a temperature regime closely matching that of the river (13-21°C). Oxygen uptake by larval and juvenile lake sturgeon (1-10 individuals per trial) was measured in a closed, 38mL respirometer (PreSens Fibox 3 fiber optic oxygen meter with OxyView software). Trials were performed in thirty-minute intervals weekly as early as 1-day post-hatch. Routine respiration rates were calculated and compared between sizes (e.g., yolk sac larvae vs. post-yolk sac larvae vs. juvenile) and between those generated for Fish Bioenergetics 4.0 (pallid sturgeon, Scaphirhynchus albus). Further needs for the development of a bioenergetics model for lake sturgeon are discussed.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(NEW) (STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 11) Testing Michigan Rocky Mountain Elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) for Genetic Bottlenecking
AUTHORS: Kelly Mildebrandt, Lake Superior State University

ABSTRACT: Population genetics play a crucial role in wildlife conservation and management. Severe genetic bottlenecks can cause problems for long term viability of wild populations. Michigan’s elk population was reestablished in 1918 from seven known individuals of Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni). Within the last 100 years that population grew to almost 1,400 individuals, declined to 200, and is now close to 1,200 elk. With the dramatic fluctuation in population size and the low number of founding members, evidence of genetic bottlenecking would be expected. Acquiring data on the genetic status of the Michigan elk herd would help wildlife managers and biologists make decisions on how to keep the local population healthy and thriving. Ninety two tissue samples were obtained from the 2017 Michigan Elk Hunt in Atlanta, MI. These are currently being analyzed for genetic diversity and evidence of genetic bottlenecking. The results will be also compared with recent research on the Rocky Mountain elk in its natural range.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P01) Can Diet Affect Coloration in Tiger Salamanders?
AUTHORS. Katherine Novak, Heather Waye – University of Minnesota Morris

ABSTRACT. Coloration is a crucial tool among amphibians for defense, for thermoregulation, and for mating. However, not much is known about how coloration is determined. One of the major pigments found in amphibian skin are carotenoids, which have two important uses. They largely make up the orange/yellow coloration in amphibian skin cells or can be metabolized into Vitamin A and other antioxidants. How amphibians either allocate these nutrients to become Vitamin A, or as part of their coloration, is a key tradeoff that potentially shows the individual’s status of health. If the individuals have access to excess food, they will have enough carotenoids to invest in brighter coloration. This leads to the question of whether increasing their access to carotenoids through diet would allow them to allocate more carotenoids into their pigmentation. Using twelve Eastern Tiger Salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) who have been individually housed at University of Minnesota Morris and six were offered a fish diet that they had been eating before the experiment as a control. The other six were offered a carotenoid enhanced krill for a total of eight weeks. Each salamander was photographed each week under the same light setup with a color standard. Before and after photographs for each salamander were compared with a color analysis R program. A significant increase in the yellow coloration of the experimental salamanders without a similar increase in control salamanders will indicate that the carotenoids obtained through diet were used for pigmentation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P02) Estimating Occupancy and Detection Probabilities of the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus)
AUTHORS. Arin Thacker, Jennifer Moore – Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT. Complete knowledge of a species’ distribution and geographic extent are both critical variables in making informed and effective conservation and management decisions. A common source of error in delineating a species’ geographic extent is through false absences (not detecting the species when it is there), which commonly occur in species with low detection probabilities. Occupancy modeling is a technique that predicts the proportion of area a species of interest occupies, while accounting for species and survey-specific detectability, using repeated surveys and presence-absence data. We used this technique to estimate the occupancy and detection probabilities of the federally threatened Eastern Massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus). Due to low detection, the status of many eastern massasauga populations is uncertain. We surveyed 31 sites, each with a previous record of a massasauga occurrence, across Michigan’s lower peninsula from May-September 2018. At each site we measured several aspects of the vegetation community to estimate occupancy probabilities. We also measured survey-specific environmental variables to estimate detection probabilities. The results of this study will aid in the management of massasaugas, by providing information to improve survey and detection, clarifying the status of unknown populations, and identifying habitat features that are associated with massasauga occupancy. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P03) Home Range and Movements of Eastern Box Turtles at Two Urban Parks in Clark County, OH
AUTHORS. Kaitlyn E. Seitz, Joshua C. Goble, Katrina M. Rosing, Richard S. Phillips – Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT. Eastern Box Turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) have been the subject of much study given concerns over potential declines in population numbers.  Urban populations of box turtles are often at increased risk of illegal collection, vehicle collisions, and habitat fragmentation.  As part of an ongoing radio-telemetry study examining box turtle populations at two urban parks in southwest Ohio, we present data on both home range (11 box turtles) and movement on 19 box turtles.  Box turtles for home range analysis were located opportunistically for an average of 30 (range 17-52) locations per turtle, covering an average of 886 days (range 405 - 1,315 days).  Using the computer program Biotas, Samples sizes precluded comparisons of sex-specific home range data, but anecdotally our home range data support larger female home ranges using MCP (x¯<sub>female</sub>= 9.93 hectares, x¯<sub>male</sub>= 3.28 hectares).  However, interpretation of home range generated using alternative techniques suggest females exhibit more disjunct habitat usage compared to males.  Further, population monitoring show tremendous fidelity to both winter hibernacula and what appear to be nesting areas.  Given our data, it appears that populations in both urban parks allow access to both over-wintering and nesting sites.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P04) Impact of Bait on Trap Success for Turtles in Pool 12 in the Upper Mississippi River
AUTHORS. Brianna L. Finnegan, David E. Koch – University of Dubuque

ABSTRACT. The purpose of this study is to test the impact of bait on trap success for freshwater turtles. Trapping was done on the Upper Mississippi River system using hoop nets. The different types of bait used were chicken, fish, sardines in soybean oil and a control trap containing no bait. Trapping was done in lentic parts of the river system. The two types of freshwater turtles most commonly found here were Chrysemrys picta (northern painted turtle) and Chelydra serpentine (eastern snapping turtle). We found that C. picta were caught more often in sardine baited traps, while C. serpentine preferred fish. These findings will help improve trap success for future researchers in hopes of improving trap success rates for freshwater turtles.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P05) Monitoring Spotted Turtles in an Ohio Fen: Do Decoys Increase Capture Rates?
AUTHORS. Katrina M. Rosing, Madison T. Nadler, Abigail Henson– Wittenberg University; Michelle Comer, ODNR Division of Natural Areas and Preserves; Richard S. Phillips, Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT. The spotted turtle is found in disjunct populations in the Great Lakes region of the United States and Canada.  Each state in the Midwest has afforded the species protection and, consequently, population monitoring is critical.  To monitor turtle population in a southwest Ohio fen, we used minnow traps with and without spotted turtle decoys as well as trail cameras.  During 2017, 12 spotted turtles were documented over 2,520 trap nights with a total of 51 spotted turtle captures and recaptures, with a single new turtle was identified by trail cam for a total of 13 documented animals.  In 2017, capture rates were highest in late March and April (4.6 and 5.4/100 trap nights respectively) with no captures in October.  In 2018, a total of 12 recaptures (no new animals) occurred during 1,033 trap nights with capture rates highest in May and June (1.6 and 2.9/100 trap nights respectively).  Overall capture rates were 2 turtles/100 trap nights in 2017 and 1 turtle/100 trap nights.  Although data from 2017 suggests the benefit of male decoys (27 captures over 1,106) over female decoys (18 captures over 1,099 nights), data from 2018 is contradictory regarding the influence of decoys on capture rates.  Trap nights with female decoys (386) resulted in 8 turtle captures, while male decoys (399) and traps without any decoys (248) resulted in 1 and 3 captures respectively.  Trapping efforts continue to determine the influence of decoys on spotted turtle captures rates in fen habitats.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P06) Timber Rattlesnake Home Range Estimates and Habitat Use on Forestry Lands in Ohio
AUTHORS. Andrew S. Hoffman, Annalee M. Tutterow, William E. Peterman – Ohio State University

ABSTRACT. Timber Rattlesnakes (Crotalus horridus) have declined dramatically throughout the northern periphery of their range, particularly in the Midwest. Here, remaining populations are concentrated on scattered Federal and State Forestry lands. Concerns regarding the potential for conflict between current forestry practices and resident timber rattlesnake populations prompted us to investigate rattlesnake home range size and habitat use using VHF telemetry on State Forestry lands in southeastern Ohio. From June 2016-October 2018, we located telemetered rattlesnakes 2-3 times per week. We assessed multi-scale habitat use at the individual and population level in relation to timber harvest and prescribed fire history. Our home range estimates were similar to those presented in previous studies from other states, but varied substantially within and among sex and age classes. We also observed substantial individual variation in habitat selection, though age class and sex strongly influenced selection among different management units. We found little evidence that snakes at our study site avoid previously burned or cut patches and observed some indication that snakes select for these disturbed habitats. Future studies will seek to link specific resource needs to different management approaches in order to determine why snakes are selecting for certain management units disproportionately.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Amphibian/Reptile

6:00pm EST

(P07) Agricultural Neonicotinoid Use and Common Grackle Decline in Central Illinois
AUTHORS. Noah P. Horsley; Michael P. Ward; Thomas J. Benson – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT. The Common Grackle was once one of the most abundant bird species in the Midwest, numbering almost 200 million individuals as recently as 1960 (Sauer et al. 2017). However, steady decline over the past 40 years has reduced this figure by 60%, to roughly 73 million. This makes the Common Grackle one of the most rapidly declining common birds in America (NABCI 2014). Interestingly, the most precipitous decline began around 2000 in the intensely agricultural eastern tallgrass prairie region. This coincided with the mainstream adoption of neonicotinoid seed treatments in U.S. agriculture. Neonicotinoids, currently the most widely used class of insecticides worldwide, have been connected to avian declines in Europe and the United States (Stanton & Clark 2018).  We are investigating a possible causal relationship between neonicotinoid seed treatments and Common Grackle decline by studying the nest success and post-fledgling survival of Common Grackles nesting in agricultural landscapes. In our first of two field seasons (2018), we monitored 56 nests across three sites in Champaign County, IL. From these nests, we banded 50 nestlings and tracked the activity and survival of 22 fledglings using hand-held and automated telemetry. Reproductive success will be evaluated by estimating nest success using a logistic exposure model and post-fledgling survival using a known-fate mark-recapture model. We expect the results of this study will serve as a foundation for investigating the role agricultural neonicotinoid use may be playing in Common Grackle decline.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P08) Analyzing the Potential Change in Behavior of Cerulean Warblers (Setophaga cerulea) in Response to an Avian Nest Predator
AUTHORS. Alexander Sharp, Kamal Islam – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. The Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea), a small, neo-tropical migrant, has gained significant attention in recent years as a species that has declined faster than any other North American songbird. Since 2007, we have been monitoring Cerulean Warbler populations within the Morgan-Monroe and Yellowwood state forests of Southern Indiana. Previous studies on cavity nesting and communal cup nesting species suggest that parents will adjust their behavior in response to an avian nest predator, to either avoid detection, or to fend off the predator. These behaviors include mobbing, selective provisioning of nestlings, and increased vigilance and aggression on the nest. Studies suggest that forest fragmentation positively impacts nest predators, and in-turn leads to an increase in nest predation. The objective of this study is to determine if and how Cerulean Warblers change their behavior when a common avian nest predator, Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata), is in the vicinity of the nest. In the summer of 2018, we conducted a preliminary study on seven Cerulean Warbler nests found at our study sites. During the observation period, three of the nests were randomly assigned to a control group, and subjected to Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapilla) vocalizations, and the other four nests were assigned to a treatment group, and subjected to Blue Jay vocalizations. We videotaped parents at the nest during the observation period to analyze their behavior. The results of this preliminary study will be presented. This study is the first to analyze the behavior of an open-cup, canopy nesting species in response to an avian nest predator. Data collected from this study will determine if Cerulean Warblers alter their behavior to avoid detection of their nest, and may help shed some light on the causes of poor nesting success in this species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P09) Breeding Ecology of Waterbirds in a Restored Floodplain of the Illinois River Valley
AUTHORS. Macayla Greider, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point, Bellrose Waterfowl Research Center-Forbes Biological Station, Illinois Natural History Survey; Dr. Joseph Lancaster, Bellrose Waterfowl Research Center-Forbes Biological Station, Illinois Natural History Survey; Aaron Yetter, Bellrose Waterfowl Research Center-Forbes Biological Station, Illinois Natural History Survey; Dr. Jacob Straub, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. Having directly restored, enhanced, and protected greater than 2,700 ha of former floodplain wetlands and associated uplands in the central Illinois River valley, the Nature Conservancy’s Emiquon Preserve is the most substantial floodplain restoration effort in the region to date. The restoration has provided critical nesting habitat for many waterbird species, including species of conservation concern such as Least Bittern, Black-Crowned Night Heron, and Common Gallinule. Since 2013, Forbes Biological Station has conducted nest searches in two distinct wetland vegetation communities, dense emergent and hemi-marsh vegetation. We evaluated nest density, nest success, and nest characteristics of marsh birds during June and July of each year. Nest searches were performed in random plots (0.2 ha) that were generated in ArcGIS and we also found nests incidentally when travelling between plots The addition of a water control structure in summer 2016 increased water management capabilities at Emiquon Preserve and restored river floodplain connectivity. In 2018 managers implemented a drawdown designed to restore moist soil vegetation and provide opportunity to perform levee repairs and this allowed us a unique opportunity to evaluate the effects of the drawdown on waterbird nesting ecology. We will compare data from summer 2018 with all previous monitoring years and compare estimates and characteristics of nest density and survival. This may provide valuable insight into how small habitat manipulations can have a large impact on marshbird breeding strategies. This multi-year research project will continue to provide information to adaptively manage and improve Emiquon Preserve and areas like it using nesting waterbirds as an environmental indicator and sentinel of wetland quality.    

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P10) Determining Acoustic Components to Drumming Log Selection in Male Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus)
AUTHORS. Jeffrey Williams, Benjamin Tjepkes, Joseph Quehl, Brandon Rochefort, Rachel Martin, Dr. Jason Riddle – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. Ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) are an important game bird in the Great Lakes region. Males perform a unique drumming display atop fallen logs to attract females and maintain their territory. We aim to evaluate drumming log selection in northern Wisconsin as part of a UW-Stevens Point Wildlife Society research project. Auditory drumming surveys were conducted between the months of March and May of 2016 and 2017 to locate used logs. We plan to use the Sound Mapping Tools ArcGIS toolbox to assess where the sound of the drumming is being heard, while accounting for several biotic and abiotic factors. Then we will compare the area of sound propagation of these points to random points throughout the property. Using these methods, we hope to see whether ruffed grouse are selecting drumming logs for their acoustic value. This information will be used to better understand how drumming logs are selected by male ruffed grouse.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P11) Determining the Sizes of Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea) Home Range and Territory with Radio Telemetry
AUTHORS. Brandon Connare, Kamal Islam – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. The Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea), a once common neo-tropical migrant throughout its breeding range, is one of the fastest declining North American wood-warblers.  Listed as state-endangered in Indiana and a species of conservation concern across its range, this small songbird has recently been the subject of much research throughout the Eastern United States and Canada.  Over the past 10 years, we have been monitoring Cerulean Warbler breeding populations at Yellowwood and Morgan-Monroe state forests in Southern Indiana as part of a larger 100-year project, the Hardwood Ecosystem Experiment.  This long term study intends to determine the effect of a variety of forestry practices on local plant and animal communities.  Understanding the impacts of forest management practices on Cerulean Warbler populations is reliant upon accurate estimations of the size of home range and territory.  Previous research conducted at our study sites and elsewhere mapped Cerulean Warbler territories by following males and recording song-perch locations, which is difficult due to this species’ tendency to stay high up in the forest canopy.  For similar reasons, studies examining the size of this species’ home range outside of its defended territory have not been previously conducted.  Our objective is to determine the size and seasonal plasticity of Cerulean Warbler territories and home ranges throughout the nesting cycle.  In the summer of 2018, we conducted a pilot study on five male Cerulean Warblers using radio-transmitters.  We tracked and recorded each bird’s location throughout its home range and territory.  We present preliminary results from our study.  A better understanding of Cerulean Warbler movements in its territory and home range is vital for the management and conservation of this declining species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P12) Energetic Carrying Capacity of Submersed Aquatic Vegetation in Semi-Permanent Marshes in the Upper Midwest
AUTHORS. Margaret Gross, Western Illinois University/Illinois Natural History Survey-Forbes Biological Station; Heath Hagy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University; John Simpson, Winous Point Marsh Conservancy; Sean Jenkins, Western Illinois University; J. Brian Davis, Mississippi State University; Joseph Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey-Forbes Biological Station; Aaron Yetter, Illinois Natural History Survey-Forbes Biological Station

ABSTRACT. Wetland management efforts often target seasonal wetlands because these habitats are considered the most valuable for waterfowl.  Understanding the distribution and availability of waterfowl food resources has become especially important amid the loss and degradation of wetland habitats.  Waterfowl managers typically estimate the energetic carrying capacity of a wetland by using bioenergetics models to compare energy demand to energy supply.  An efficient method for estimating food density utilizes visual indices and predictive equations, though previous attempts to develop predictive equations to estimate aquatic plant biomass are lacking.  Furthermore, aquatic vegetation density estimates are lacking for many of the semi-permanent marshes found throughout the Joint Venture, which could cause slight inaccuracies in bioenergetic model parameters.  We estimated the energetic carrying capacity of submersed aquatic vegetation for 20 wetland sites within the JV, which was expressed as energetic use days (EUD).  Six of the 20 wetland sites were sampled multiple years and the remaining 14 sites were sampled only once during summer 2015–2017.  Additionally, we evaluated a rapid assessment technique to estimate submersed aquatic vegetation biomass using percent horizontal coverage of each vegetation species, secchi depth, water depth, and vegetation species specific TMEN estimates.  The average energetic carrying capacity among wetland sites and years was 403,521 ± 139, 356 EUD and ranged from 4,114 EUD to 3,761,747 EUD.  The submersed aquatic vegetation rapid assessment technique facilitated the development of a predictive index, which was correlated with estimates of submersed aquatic vegetation biomass (kg/ha; R<sup>2</sup><sub>adj</sub> = 0.58, P < 0.0001) and EUD (R<sup>2</sup><sub>adj</sub> = 0.64, P < 0.0001).  Our results will be useful to conservation planners for estimating energetic carrying capacities of semi-permanently-flooded marsh habitats, which will aid in projecting impacts of wetland management alternatives (i.e., semi-permanently-flooded marsh versus moist-soil management).

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P13) Estimating Abundance of Marshbirds in Wetlands Managed for Waterfowl
AUTHORS. Therin Bradshaw, Western Illinois University/Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Christopher N. Jacques, Western Illinois University; Heath M. Hagy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Joseph D. Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Abigail G. Blake-Bradshaw, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT. It is widely assumed that waterfowl management activities benefit a variety of wetland dependent birds, but few studies have empirically evaluated those benefits or tradeoffs among multi-species management strategies. In particular, marsh birds are an understudied guild of migratory birds of conservation concern that can be valuable indicators of wetland health and may benefit from wetland management for waterfowl. We assessed marsh bird abundance of wetlands across Illinois to better understand how natural wetland characteristics, impoundment management for waterfowl, and surrounding landscape characteristics influence marsh bird abundance of wetlands. During late spring and early summer 2015–2017, we conducted call-back surveys to assess marsh bird abundance of wetlands with respect to wetland characteristics and management throughout Illinois. We surveyed marsh birds three times annually at focal sites (i.e., passive or active management for waterfowl), random sites (i.e., emergent, pond, or lake polygons from the National Wetland Inventory), and Critical Trends Assessment Program (CTAP) sites (i.e., wetlands from the Illinois Natural History Survey’s CTAP). Marsh bird abundance was positively correlated with percent area cover inundation, greatest at 100% area inundated (abundance = 15.0, SE = 0.52), and lowest at 0% inundated (abundance = 0.99, SE= 0.11) following a logistic curve. Detection probability decreased with ordinal date, for every week delay in marsh bird survey detection declined 10.7% (SE=0.2) at 50 meters. Our results suggest that inundation is related to marsh bird abundance and managers increasing marsh bird abundance on the landscape should hold water at levels suitable for marsh bird nesting creating habitat that provides both nest security and food for foraging.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P14) Evaluating Sub-lethal Infections of Sphaeridiotrema Spp. and Cyathocotyle Bushiensis Trematodes in Captive Lesser Scaup
AUTHORS. Cheyenne R. Beach, Western Illinois University; Rebecca A. Cole, US Geological Survey; Joseph D. Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Aaron P. Yetter, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Heath M. Hagy, US Fish and Wildlife Service; Christopher N. Jacques, Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT. During spring and fall migrations throughout the upper Midwest, US, thousands of lesser scaup (Aythya affinis) die from Cyathocotyle bushiensis (Cb) and Sphaeridiotrema spp. (Ss) (Class: Trematoda) intestinal infections after consuming exotic faucet snails (Bithynia tentaculata). Lesser scaup serve as a final host for Cb and Ss while faucet snails serve as the first and second intermediate hosts for the trematodes. As recommended by previous studies, this experimental study will evaluate the potential effects of sub-lethal infections of trematode parasites on the immunological response, body condition, and survival of migrating lesser scaup across the Upper Mississippi River System. Female lesser scaup will be captured at key mid-latitude stopover sites (Pool 19 of the Mississippi River and Emiquon Preserve) and held at Forbes Biological Station, Havana, IL. Faucet snails will be collected by hand from Pool 7 of the Mississippi River and dissected to recover mature Cb and Ss metacercariae. The captive lesser scaup will undergo repeated or single dose trematode infections and will be euthanized 16 days post-infection to gather information that will provide data to evaluate temporal changes in health along a continuum from initial infection to shedding eggs to point of euthanasia. Addressing basic questions related to physiological responses of lesser scaup to infection with trematodes may aid in formulating potential management strategies to minimize co-occurrence of lesser scaup and infected faucet snails.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P15) Foraging Behavior of Breeding Songbirds in Urban Columbus, Ohio
AUTHORS. Lana Milbern, Stephen Matthews, Ph.D. – The Ohio State University School of Environment and Natural Resources

ABSTRACT. Urbanization can have profound influences shaping patterns of songbird diversity. For many species urbanization poses considerable challenges yet for in many instances urban areas provide important habitat for songbirds, most notably riparian urban areas. With renewed interest to maintain functioning urban forests, understanding the interactions between songbirds and their urban environments is critical to making informed land management decisions.For our study, we chose to focus on the tree-species preferences for foraging and foraging behaviors of songbirds in restored and unrestored sections of urban riparian forests in Columbus, Ohio USA. The goals of our study are to understand how urban songbirds utilize their floristic environment for foraging, identify foraging-related factors, such as food availability, and identify how forest restoration efforts will affect foraging ecology. To answer these questions, we are conducting spot maps, foraging surveys, vegetation surveys, and arthropod counts at urban and rural sites near Columbus, Ohio from May to August in 2018 and 2019. Preliminary data show that urban songbirds most often forage on Acer negundo and Juglans nigra. During Autumn 2018, invasive plants will be removed and two-year-old saplings will be planted in sections of the urban sites. In the spring of 2019, spot maps and foraging surveys will be conducted at these reforestation plots to observe how urban songbirds utilize these saplings for foraging. We hope that this project will help inform urban restoration work in respect to avian conservation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Avian

6:00pm EST

(P16) Grass Carp Thermal Maturation and Proximal Cues for Spawning in Ponds
AUTHORS. Jeffrey C. Jolley, Duane C. Chapman, Curt G. Byrd, Patrick M. Kocovský –U.S. Geological Survey

ABSTRACT. Grass carp Ctenopharyngodon idella reproduction has occurred in the Lake Erie basin; understanding spawning cues could be useful in designing control methods and determine which Great Lakes tributaries are potential spawning locations.  Grass carp broadcast spawn and require flowing water to keep their semi-buoyant eggs suspended; spawning cues are unknown. At least 633 cumulative degree days = 15 ºC (ADD15) has been reported necessary for the maturation of gonads.  To validate this estimate, we evaluated oocyte maturation of 67 and 50 females in experimental ponds in 2017 and 2018, respectively.  In 2017, the first female with ripe oocytes occurred >800 ADD15, occurring 7 days after 633 ADD15.  In 2018, the first female with ripe oocytes occurred >1,000 ADD15, over 2 weeks after 633 ADD15.  Estimated threshold for 50% of females to have ripe oocytes was 906 ADD15 in 2017 and 1,265 ADD15 in 2018.   April 2018 had record low temperatures followed by record high May temperatures, suggesting that the sequencing of accumulation of thermal units may also be important.  A pond mesocosm was used to simulate river conditions and variable spawning cues (i.e., flow, turbidity, temperature).  Spawning occurred during the first trial, when fish were injected with hormones (HCG, carp pituitary), was confirmed by spawning behavior recordings (chasing, rubbing) in high velocity areas, and collection of fertilized eggs.  Spawning also occurred when the mesocosm was held in a stagnant condition (fish were hormone injected).  Fish spawned at the deep outlet kettle where the water input was also located.  Grass carp did not spawn in additional trials, but water temperatures may have increased beyond the suitable range.  Future trials will focus on replicating the results of trial one, precise temperature control, and further variation of environmental cues.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P17) Roundup Exposure and Warm Temperatures Reduce Activity of Orconectes rusticus Crayfish
AUTHORS. Alyssa J. Ulrich, Caleb T. Austin, Amber A. Burgett – Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT. Agricultural runoff into aquatic habitats such as streams, wetlands, and ponds can impact the survival and behavior of aquatic organisms. Additionally, climate change and warming temperatures in some areas can increase the stress, change behavior, and also increase mortality for some aquatic species. Using the species, Orconectes rusticus, we examined the impact of a sublethal dose of roundup and warmer temperatures to examine how this impacted their behavior towards conspecifics. Roundup and a warmer temperature reduced the overall activity of crayfish. There was no impact of Roundup on overall aggression towards conspecifics, however temperature did reduce aggression levels. Alterations in crayfish activity level as a result of roundup and warming temperatures could impact their role in the stream food web, as they potentially become less territorial, less adept at foraging, or shift their diet towards less active foraging methods. Crayfish behavioral changes could ultimately impact the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P18) Role of the Lateral Line in Male-Male Territorial Competition in the Fathead Minnow, Pimephales Promelas
AUTHORS. Hannah TerMarsch, Jessica Ward – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. The lateral line system of aquatic vertebrates is made up of mechanoreceptors called neuromasts that are arranged in a series of rows along the head and body, and serve to detect movement, vibration, and pressure gradients in the water. Although the structure and use of the lateral line system varies among species, the ability of receivers to exploit mechanosensory information has been shown to affect the outcome of interspecific interactions (e.g., predator evasion, or prey capture). However, comparatively less is known about how mechanosensory information might influence organismal decision-making during intraspecific interactions, such as reproduction. In this study, we investigated the role of the lateral line during male-male territorial interactions in the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas). Male fathead minnows compete for territories and display several aggressive displays, including charging, tail flicking, and broadside (lateral) threats—all of which displace water. Receivers who exploit such information could more accurately assess the condition or level of aggressive motivation of their opponent. We pharmacologically manipulated the lateral line of breeding male minnows using aminoglycoside antibiotics and conducted a behavioral experiment that paired males with and without access to mechanosensory information in territorial contests. Our results indicate that mechanosensory signals are likely an important component of male-male aggressive communication and provide insight into the evolution of complex signals in fishes. These data also suggest that antibiotics in streams and rivers have potential to alter intraspecific interactions in natural populations, with significant ecological and evolutionary effects.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P19) Harmful Algal Blooms Impair Innate Predator-Evasion Behavior in a Freshwater Fish
AUTHORS. Gina Lamka, Hannah Mullinax, Autum Auxier, Jessica Ward – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. Cyanotoxins produced by harmful algal blooms (HABs) are commonly detected in freshwater systems in the United States and abroad. Emerging evidence suggests that chronic exposure of fish and other aquatic organisms to cyanotoxins may induce sub-lethal effects on behavior, negatively influencing individual fitness. Along with reducing recruitment of young into the population, exposure may increase the rate of transfer up the food chain, posing significant health risks for humans. For example, exposure to neurodegenerative cyanotoxins through the consumption of contaminated foods has been linked to sporadic increases in diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. Despite the potential for similar cognitive and motor impairment in aquatic organisms, the effects of neurodegenerative cyanotoxins on the performance of fish in real-world contexts is largely unknown. In this study, we examined the sub-lethal effects of a common algal neurotoxin, 2,4-diaminobutyric acid dihydrochloride (DABA), on the innate predator-evasion performance of larval fathead minnows, Pimephales promelas. Eggs and larvae were exposed to a range of environmentally relevant concentrations of DABA (0, 1, 5, 25, 125 and 625 µg/L) for 21 days. On day 22, behavioral assays were conducted by administering a non-point source vibrational stimulus to an arena containing a focal larva. Responses were filmed using a high-speed camera at 1000 fps, and perceptual and motor components of the response were analyzed separately. Compared with nonexposed fish, exposure to DABA significantly modulated the response of larvae to a simulated predator. This research is among the first to attempt to understand how neurodegenerative cyanotoxins affect the behavior of aquatic organisms in real-world contexts and could be used by managers to predict the fate of aquatic communities in areas afflicted by HABs.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P20) Exposure to Harmful Algal Blooms Impairs Sensorimotor
AUTHORS. Ryan Seymour, Jessica Ward, Autum Auxier, Hannah Mullinax – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. Cyanobacteria are prevalent blue-green algae that impact Midwestern freshwater systems, important environmental and economic resources. Emerging evidence suggests that exposure to neurotoxic compounds can induce sub-lethal behavioral and central nervous system (CNS) changes that have potential to affect individual fitness. The long-term goal of this research is to evaluate the significance of emerging algal neurotoxins for fish populations and aquatic communities. A first step toward this goal, this project used a low-dose, lab-controlled exposure regime to quantify the effects of 2,4-diaminobutyric acid (DABA) on the sensorimotor performance of embryos, and 21-day-old larvae . Despite reports of impaired motor function in humans linked to the consumption of contaminated fish, the effects of these compounds on fish themselves is largely unknown. Embryo motor activity and prey capture efficiency decreased with increased exposures to the cyanotoxins. The results will fill critical gaps in knowledge regarding the short- and long-term effects of sub-lethal exposure to algal neurotoxins on fish and provide direct insight into the factors affecting routes of human exposure and health risks

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P21) Evaluating Nest-switching Behavior and Microhabitat Partitioning of Southern Flying Squirrels in West-central Illinois
AUTHORS. Katherine Rexroad, Western Illinois University; Shelli Dubay, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT. Southern flying squirrels (Glaucomys volans; SFS) are forest-dependent, nocturnal, non-hibernating, arboreal mammals that den in tree cavities.  Previous studies suggest that several structural attributes of overstory hardwood trees are essential to SFS life-history needs, especially locomotion, den site selection, and food sources.  Nevertheless, little information is available on the influence of vegetation structure on microhabitat use across fragmented Midwestern landscapes.  To date, no studies have evaluated whether proximate factors (e.g., structural differences in overstory vegetation) influence microhabitat partitioning between activity areas of male and female SFS across Midwestern landscapes.  The goal of this research is continue the long-term SFS research program to better understand the additive or antagonistic effects of intrinsic factors (sex, age, nutritional condition), microhabitat features, habitat fragmentation, and parasite loads on home range dynamics and nest-switching behavior of SFS.  Specific project objectives include 1) quantifying nest occupancy patterns, and rates of nest switching/reuse by SFS between sexes and across activity areas, 2) investigating associations between microhabitat (tree diameter-at-breast height, snag density, tree height, availability of mast trees), habitat fragmentation (patch size, distance to nearest habitat edge) and home range (size, shape) metrics of SFS, and 3) estimating prevalence and intensity of infection with parasites in local populations of SFS.  Increasing basic knowledge of interactions and interrelationships between intrinsic and habitat effects on SFS nesting patterns, particularly in regions characterized by low habitat quality and animal densities will provide greater insight into future conservation strategies for SFS along the western boundary of their geographic range.  

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Behavior

6:00pm EST

(P22) Barotrauma in Lake Erie Yellow Perch: Take Pride in Your Perch!
AUTHORS. Jesse Lepak, New York Sea Grant

ABSTRACT. Yellow Perch are one of the primary fish species targeted by commercial and recreational anglers in the New York portion of Lake Erie. Unfortunately, based on catch data, the majority of Yellow Perch caught in this area are from depths where they suffer the effects of barotrauma when brought to the surface. These fish sustain tissue damage from the change in pressure and subsequent expansion of their gas bladders. When released at the surface, these fish often float, and either experience mortality directly or from predation by birds or other predators. Given that the majority of Lake Erie Yellow Perch captured in New York are from depths where they suffer from the effects of barotrauma, the seemingly sustainable and ethical practice of catch-and-release angling actually results in mortality and waste of improperly released fish. This situation provides an educational opportunity to encourage more sustainable behavior and reduce the practice of wasting resources that could provide much needed protein to consumers. Thus, harvest of fish suffering from barotrauma, or the proper release (with deep release recompression devices) of Yellow Perch would reduce unnecessary mortality and increase sustainable practices and ethical behavior.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(P24) Enhancing Management of Post-stocked Alligator Gar (Atractosteus spatula) by Investigating Gear Detection
AUTHORS. Kevin Lambert, Southeast Missouri University

ABSTRACT. Alligator Gar were once considered very abundant throughout their range; however, due to issues such as the loss of floodplain habitat and overexploitation from eradication efforts, biologists have documented major declines in both the abundance and individual size of Alligator Gar populations. In Missouri, Alligator Gar were ranked as extirpated, which led to the development of the Alligator Gar Management and Restoration Plan and subsequent reintroduction efforts throughout Southeast Missouri. Despite stocking efforts, management decisions have been slowed due to the inability to efficiently sample the species. Low capture success rates due to inefficient sampling gears, leave fisheries management biologists without the information needed for informed decision making and evaluation of the population characteristics needed for management and conservation of Alligator Gar. Assessment of gear efficiency is necessary for effective population monitoring in both juvenile and adult Alligator Gar.  The objective of this research is to evaluate which gear seasonally should be used to maximize Alligator Gar capture success within the reintroduction sites. We plan to sample both active and passive gears throughout the year to determine the most effective timing and best gear(s) to sample Alligator Gar of all sizes.   After polling the Alligator Gar Technical Committee, we selected 5 standardized gears (experimental gill net, trammel net, electrofishing, juglines, mini-fyke nets) to employ in Marquette  Lake. This research will be used to develop a standardized sampling protocol to enhance management of post-stocked Alligator Gar and guide biologists in management decisions to build a self-sustaining population and a unique trophy fishery. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(P25) Enhancing Management of Post-Stocked Alligator Gar by Investigating Habitat Selection
AUTHORS. James Studdard, Southeast Missouri State University

ABSTRACT. Alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) are declining throughout their native range. In recent decades, conservation agencies including the Missouri Department of Conservation, have been working on recovering Alligator Gar populations to self-sustaining levels. In many areas of the native range, disconnection of floodplain habitat due to river channelization and flood control have greatly reduced alligator gar habitat diversity and availability. To better manage stocked alligator gar in Missouri, Vemco V16 ultrasonic transmitters are being implanted in hatchery reared juvenile and wild-caught adult alligator gar. The fish implanted with transmitters will be used to track movement and habitat use in four floodplain habitats selected for this study, based on previous stocking abundance. Sidescan sonar was used to collect habitat data and determination of habitat type is based on a 10m X 10m grid. Habitat assessed will be submerged log, log complex (two or more logs), submerged tree limbs, open water, open shoreline, submerged vegetation, standing trees, and tree roots. Depth, temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, and conductivity is also being factored into the habitat selection. The information gathered in this study is important to determine seasonal habitat selection and help form potential future management actions, including habitat restoration efforts and identification of additional reintroduction sites within Missouri.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(P26) Scent Marking in Sunda Clouded Leopards (Neofelis diardi): Novel Observations Close a Key Gap in Understanding Felid Communication Behaviours
AUTHORS. Maximilian L. Allen, Heiko U. Wittmer, Endro Setiawan, Sarah Jaffe, Andrew J. Marshall – University of Illinois - Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT. Intraspecific communication is integral to the behavioural ecology of solitary carnivores, but observing and quantifying their communication behaviours in natural environments is difficult. Our systematic literature review found that basic information on scent marking is completely lacking for 23% of all felid species, and information on 21% of other felid species comes solely from one study of captive animals. Here we present results of the first systematic investigation of the scent marking behaviours of Sunda clouded leopards in the wild. Our observations using motion-triggered video cameras in Indonesian Borneo are novel for clouded leopards, and contrary to previous descriptions of their behaviour. We found that clouded leopards displayed 10 distinct communication behaviours, with olfaction, scraping, and cheek rubbing the most frequently recorded. We also showed that males make repeated visits to areas they previously used for marking and that multiple males advertise and receive information at the same sites, potentially enhancing our ability to document and monitor clouded leopard populations. The behaviours we recorded are remarkably similar to those described in other solitary felids, despite tremendous variation in the environments they inhabit, and close a key gap in understanding and interpreting communication behaviours of clouded leopards and other solitary felids.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Conservation Biology

6:00pm EST

(P28) Monitoring Efforts and Demographic Data on a Kirtland’s Snake Population in Clark County, Ohio
AUTHORS. Joshua C. Goble (student), Katrina A. Rosing (student), Kyle Van Dyne (alumni), Richard S. Phillips (professor) – Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT. Kirtland’s Snake (Clonophis kirtlandii) is a state-threatened species in Ohio with a recent species assessment commenting on the paucity of data on the species. A critical component of determining species population status is the ability to effectively detect them. Beginning in the spring of 2017, coverboard and visual encounter surveys were conducted on recently retired farmland adjacent to a known Kirtland’s snake population. Forty aluminum tins (3’ * 4’) were placed at 15 m intervals along the edge of a-recently plowed (2017) field and the adjacent fallow field and monitored opportunistically. For each survey, substrate temperature, air temperature, and relative humidity, were recorded. We also recorded water table data from a nearby USGS well-site. For each capture, we collected weight, sex, svl, and total length. Animals > 8 grams were implanted with 8mm passive integrated transponders and released on site. Since April of 2017, at least 20 unique animals (13F, 6M, 1unk) were captured with an average weight of 25.2 grams (range 3.1 – 48 g) and an average svl of 27.6 cm (range 17.9 – 35.9), suggesting broad demographic representation. During the entire survey (63 total surveys), a total of 31 captures and recaptures have occurred. A total of 47 surveys yielded 10 captures in 2017. In 2018, 16 survey have yielded 10 captures, 7 recaptures, and 4 unmarked animals. Potential variables correlated with a two-fold increase in capture rates with 1/3 of the survey efforts are being investigated.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Detectability

6:00pm EST

(P29) Assessing Eastern Iowa Rodents and Ticks and Ecological Influences on the Prevalence of Borrelia Burgdorferi
AUTHORS. Taline M. Holman, Thomas J. Scroggs, Kelly A. Grussendorf – University of Dubuque.

ABSTRACT. Though Lyme disease is primarily known as a disease of the northeast, it continues to increase throughout the Midwest. There has been a significant increase in the number of reported cases in recent years in the state of Iowa. In 2015 Dubuque County ranked third in Iowa for Lyme cases, only behind Johnson and Linn counties. To get a better understanding of the prevalence and transmission of B. burgdorferi in eastern Iowa as well as the factors contributing to the prevalence of the disease we trapped forest-based ground-dwelling rodents and performed tick dragging to determine their exposure rates. A pilot study was conducted in 2016 where 84% of captured rodents carried B. burgdorferi. All captures occurred at a single location and included Peromyscus leucopus (white-footed mouse), Peromyscus maniculatus (deer mouse) and Tamias striatus (eastern chipmunk). During 2017, 91 rodents were captured from four different locations and included P. leucopus, P. maniculatus, Microtus pennsylvanicus (meadow vole) and Zapus hudsonius (meadow jumping mouse). Current work is being carried out for 2018 collections includes eight locations. During 2017 and currently in 2018 Ixodes scapularis (blacklegged ticks) were collected and are being tested for the presence of B. burgdorferi via PCR analysis. Each year’s results will be compared to the first year as a basis and analysis will be done to correlate ecological factors influencing the habitat of captured rodents and ticks. We will also be comparing sites based on their geographical distance to the Mississippi River as well as the watersheds that they are in. This project will allow for us to determine the prevalence of the B. burgdorferi in Iowa rodents and ticks, and will also provide information about the role habitat plays in the spread of this infectious disease.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P30) Characterizing the Effects of White Grub (Pothodiplostomum minimum) on the Immune and Circulatory Systems of Bluegill Sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus)
AUTHORS. Emily K. Tucker, Dominique Krason, Cory D. Suski – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ABSTRACT. White grub (Postodiplostomum minimum) is a common parasitic trematode in freshwater fishes, especially bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus). This study examines the impacts of a severe white grub outbreak in bluegill sunfish from a pond in Urbana, Illinois. 110 infected bluegill were examined. We noted that many of the affected bluegill had small red sores on their fins and bodies, and the number of sores was correlated with the intensity of trematode metacercariae on the internal organs. Some fish also showed signs of cataracts or eye damage. The most heavily affected organs were the heart and posterior kidney, though the head kidney, liver, and spleen also contained many metacercariae. Histologically, the metacercariae caused morphological damage to the internal organs that would likely reduce functionality of the organs, especially in the heart and kidney. Hematocrit in the infected fish was slightly lower, corresponding with the damage induced on the hematopoietic organs. Our results suggest that white grub can cause severe damage to the circulatory and immune systems of bluegill, and fisheries managers should be aware of the signs of severe outbreaks in ponds.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P31) Know Where It Should Go: Compliantly Disposing Infectious Waste
AUTHORS. Nancy K. Businga, Wildlife Disease Specialist/Health Lab Manager - WM/Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Jim Fitzpatrick, CEO, Madison Environmental Resourcing Inc.

ABSTRACT. Poster targeted to Field Researchers and Park Rangers.Don't Throw These in the Trash Bin:- Needles- Lancets- Sharps- Scalpels- Used DartsDo Use a Certified Biohazard Disposal Company to:Incinerate Contaminated Research MaterialsProperly Dispose Discarded Needles Found in Public SpacesPickup and Mailback Options Available From Certifed Biohazard DIsposal Companies. Select A System that Provides Cradle-to-Grave Documentation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P32) Movement Patterns of Escaped Captive Cervids in Ohio
AUTHORS. Laurie Graber, Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT. Ohio’s first Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) positive white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) was shot on a shooting preserve in Holmes County, October 2014. Since then, 93 escaped cervids have been documented and 85 tested for CWD. Of the 93 escapes, 45 had official United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) ID tags. Forty seven (47) escaped cervids were traced to an owner with the help of the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA). Ohio state law requires any escaped cervid to be reported within 48 hours. However, not all captive deer are required to be marked and not all deer that escape are reported which makes it difficult to know exactly how many escaped deer are on the landscape. Fallow deer (Dama dama) are a newly emerging threat that have little regulatory oversight in Ohio. Although fallow deer are not a CWD susceptible species they can carry bTB and can displace native deer. Furthermore, many cervid farmers that own fallow deer likely own other CWD susceptible species. Given the number of escaped cervids and related disease concerns, we began tracking, monitoring, and recording distances using a variety of means. We found that the average distance traveled by those escapes for which reliable estimates were available (n=the number that is used to generate the average of 4.8km) was 4.8 kilometers. This is the distance from the facility where the deer escaped from to where the deer was ultimately collected. The final disposition of escapes reported to the ODA is not always available. Some may die of natural causes in the wild while others might get harvested and go unreported. Working with ODA, the captive cervid industry, and the legislature is needed to ensure Ohio’s wild deer herd remains disease free.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P33) Prevalence of Hantavirus in Wild Populations of Mice in the Greater Muncie Area
AUTHORS. Angela N. Fletcher, Timothy C. Carter Ph.D., Heather Bruns Ph.D. – Ball State University

ABSTRACT. Biologists have an increasing interest in hantavirus throughout the Midwestern United States due to its potential negative implications on humans. Understanding the prevalence of this epizootic virus throughout the environment is a priority for the safety of biologists that work with small mammals but also represents concerns for public health in general. Peromyscus sp. are the main vector for the spread of the virus in the Midwest US. Recently high prevalence rates of hantavirus were documented in one location in Indiana.  It is unclear if these prevalence rates are localized or wide spread. We plan to look at the presence of hantavirus in the Muncie area in hope of gaining a better understanding to the extent of hantavirus prevalence on the landscape.  During the month of November 2017, we deployed Sherman traps to catch mice on a single property at Ball State University. Efforts were focused on a 50 acre restored prairie using 60-meter grids established throughout 15 prairie management plots to sample the presence of hantavirus in Peromyscus sp. throughout the prairie.Traps were checked daily and general morphological characteristics were collected on captured individuals. We also collected blood samples from captured individuals to determine the presence of hantavirus within the community. Our trapping efforts yielded 23 Peromyscus sp. throughout the study. Nine blood samples were collected from captured individuals. All nine samples collected were negative for hantavirus. We plan to increase our sampling effort and continue to collect data in the fall of 2018. The results of this research may guide management decisions for future hantavirus surveying.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P34) Diagnostic Findings and Clinical Management of Capillaria aerophilus – Associated Bronchopneumonia and Tracheitis in Captive Black Bear Cubs (Ursus americanus)
AUTHORS. Jennifer Swan, Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory; Lindsey Long, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Tim Yoshino, University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Veterinary Medicine; Elizabeth Elsmo, Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

ABSTRACT. In September of 2017, two orphaned juvenile black bear cubs in a captive rehabilitation facility presented with clinical signs of coughing and cyanosis. Within days, nine of nine cohoused bears were exhibiting dyspnea, coughing, and lethargy. Despite therapeutic intervention, two bears died and were submitted to the Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for necropsy. Gross and microscopic findings were consistent with severe catarrhal and eosinophilic tracheitis and bronchopneumonia caused by a nematode parasite. Molecular identification of the parasite Capillaria aerophilus was confirmed by semi-nested PCR targeting the Cox1NEM and CaerInt2F genes. Numerous eggs morphologically consistent with C. aerophilus were detected by fecal examination of both bears. Anthelminthic treatment of the remaining cohoused bears led to resolution of clinical signs. A number of wild carnivores can serve as definitive hosts of C. aerophilus, including black bears. Dogs and cats may also become infected, and there are rare reports in humans. Capillaria aerophilus has a direct life cycle, although earthworms can act as paratenic hosts.  While there is a single description of C. aerophilus-associated bronchopneumonia in wild black bears, this parasite has not been previously associated with an outbreak or fatalities in this species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Diseases

6:00pm EST

(P35) Ecology of Box-nesting Waterfowl in Central WI: Biological versus Societal Benefits
AUTHORS. Elianne Heilhecker, Marissa Kaminski, Dr. Jacob Straub, Dr. Matt Palumbo, Leah Bell, Sean Mason – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. Cavity nesting birds like Aix sponsa (Wood ducks) and Lophodytes cucullatus (Hooded merganser) relied historically on natural tree cavities but today some populations have the option to use nest boxes for their eggs. At the Mead Wildlife Area in central Wisconsin, cavity nesting waterfowl have the option to use tree cavities or nest boxes. Currently, most data suggests sufficient natural tree cavities are available for cavity nesting birds, yet duck boxes still remain a factor at many wildlife management areas. While nest box use by these species has varied over time, recently managers have inquired which, if any, factors predict if a nest box will be successful.  Managers should also consider the potential societal benefits (e.g., public engagement, educational opportunities, etc.) box programs could have.  Beginning in 2002 data has been collected by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Wildlife Society by checking 78-129 boxes annually in January and February. Other studies in our study site have demonstrated low box use rates (<15%) by waterfowl. Our aim is to evaluate biological (i.e., nest success, use, etc.) and societal value of a box-program in Central Wisconsin and make management recommendations accordingly. Our biological evaluation will assist field biologists by evaluating if five independent predictor variables have any significant effect on our response variables. To determine this, competing model sets will be evaluated with a single or combinations of the following variables: species, year, use from previous year, location, and age of box.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Ecology

6:00pm EST

(P36) Evaluating the Fish Communities of Riffles/runs with Three Different Substrate Types in Preparation for Changes Post Lowhead Dam Removal
AUTHORS. Drew Holloway, Muncie Sanitary District Bureau of Water Quality; Kaleb Eden, Ball State University

ABSTRACT. The importance of a natural flow regime has been well documented throughout the years. The traditional riffle, run, pool sequence allows a stream to optimize its community structure and allow habitat specific species an opportunity to flourish. Lowhead dams alter this process and overtime can lead to expansive impoundments reducing the amount of riffle and run habitats available. The removal of neglected and unnecessary dams will allow a stream to return to its natural state. The West Fork of White River in Muncie, In will be having two of its lowhead dams removed in the coming year allowing these habitats to return. In preparation for these removals and the anticipated substrate changes, a 10x10m sandy run, boulder/cobble riffle and bedrock riffle were sampled using electrofishing methods. A total of 19 species were sampled for a total of 422 individuals. Five of the species were observed in all three substrate types including four Cyprinidae species. When looking at each substrate type individually we see subtle differences, like the presence of various Percidae species that were absent in the sandy run but dominant in the boulder/cobble riffle. The results of this project will be used to help explain the potential changes seen as the West Fork White River returns to its natural state.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Ecology

6:00pm EST

(P37) Assessing the Impact of Mussel Bed Presence on Aquatic Macroinvertebrate Communities and Stream Function
AUTHORS. Justin Radecki, Kathryn Sheets, Ana Wassilak, Raelee Olson – Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT. This project examined the relationship between live, active mussel beds and macroinvertebrate communities in two Barry CO., MI stream systems. Surveys of the Coldwater River & Cedar Creek were conducted to search for live mussel beds and identify species presence and abundance, and to complete quantitative sampling of the macroinvertebrate community within these same mussel beds and at paired sites without mussels.  Abiotic factors including water chemistry, substrate analysis, width, depth, velocity, and canopy cover were also sampled at all sites. We hypothesized that mussel beds would contain a larger percent of filter-feeding macroinvertebrates. The results of this project should be useful to track recovery in the degraded Coldwater River, and establish a framework for baseline conditions in Cedar Creek. Our preliminary data indicates that there was a significantly greater abundance of dipterans in Cedar Creek in comparison to the Coldwater River (% abundance 49 vs. 31; p=0.032; ANOVA).  Similarly, total macroinvertebrate abundance was significantly higher in Cedar Creek vs. the Coldwater River (total abundance 10,500 vs. 4,100; p=0.052; ANOVA). According to completed analyses, there was no significant difference in %EPT, richness, Family Biotic Index, or diversity between the two systems. Additionally, a wider range of mussel species (9 species in Cedar Creek to 6 species in the Coldwater River) and a higher abundance of mussels overall were found at the Cedar Creek sites than in the Coldwater River. Our preliminary results concerning relationship between macroinvertebrates and mussel beds suggest little difference in macroinvertebrate communities between experimental and control sites.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Ecology

6:00pm EST

(P38) Validating Daily Otolith Increment Deposition in Aquarium-Reared Juvenile Walleye, Sander Vitreus
AUTHORS. Kaitlin Ulin, L. Zoe Almeida – Ohio State University; Taylor A. Brown, Cornell University; David Dippold, Stuart A. Ludsin, Elizabeth A. Marshall – Ohio State University

ABSTRACT. The daily age and growth rate of a juvenile fish can provide useful information about early life conditions. Researchers frequently take advantage of the fact that fish otoliths accrue daily rings, which can be counted and measured, to estimate ages and growth rates.  Previous studies have indicated, however, that aging juvenile walleye, Sander vitreus, with otolith increments past 42 d is difficult, if not impossible. This difficulty is partially due to the development of accessory primordia (a second growth plane on the otolith), a problem exacerbated by otolith preparation techniques that obscure rings on different planes. Herein, we examined the accuracy of aging walleye before and past 42 d using known-age, aquarium-reared walleye and a modified otolith preparation technique. Our otolith preparation technique involved gently grinding the convex side of the otolith in three planes: the core, the middle, and the edge. By grinding on the convex side, we removed material along a curved axis to allow visibility of rings from the hatch-check to the most recently laid ring and, therefore, allowed us to age the fish from hatch to capture. Walleye were hatched on April 20, 2018 (± 3 d) and reared for 96 d; sagittal otoliths were collected on days 10, 41, 56, 79, and 96 post-hatch. Otoliths were aged by three readers. We are comparing reader estimates of ages to known ages and analyzing among- and within-reader error to determine if error lies within readers’ interpretation of rings, or if accessory primordia inhibit clear interpretation of daily rings past 42 d. Future experiments manipulating temperature will be conducted to confirm if our findings are consistent under different environmental conditions known to affect otolith growth patterns.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P39) An Evaluation of Angler Use of Fish Attractors in Ohio Reservoirs
AUTHORS. Kevin S. Page, Christopher R. Aman, Matt A. Hangsleben, Matthew D. Wolfe – Ohio Division of Wildlife

ABSTRACT. For over a decade, the Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) has added fish attractors to reservoirs to improve angler fishing success. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the addition of attractors has effectively improved fishing. However, a more quantitative evaluation of the value of adding fish attractors to reservoirs given the costs associated with their deployment, would be useful. We evaluated angler use of attractors by analyzing the spatial distribution of anglers interviewed during on-the-water angler creel surveys conducted during 2014–2016 at 12 reservoirs that had fish attractors.  A Chi-square analysis was used to determine if distributions of anglers showed a preference for areas with fish attractors versus those without.  Anglers were also queried in 2018 at five reservoirs to gauge their levels of awareness and usage of fish attractors, and to collect angler opinions on the effectiveness of attractors at improving fishing. At 4 of 12 reservoirs, boat anglers showed a propensity to use attractors more frequently than expected, whereas shore anglers showed a greater propensity at seven of the reservoirs. It is unclear whether this represents purposeful targeting of attractors by anglers or a function of where attractors were deployed (e.g., near popular fishing locations). The percentage of anglers that were aware of and targeted fish attractors appeared generally low (5–32%).  However, these anglers were generally positive regarding the effectiveness of attractors as 44–89% felt that attractors improved fishing. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P40) Assessment of Thermal Discharge on Reservoir Fish Community on Turtle Creek Reservoir in Sullivan County, Indiana
AUTHORS. Cole P. Baird, Ball State University; Kevin A. Gaston, Paul D. McMurray, Jr., James R. Stahl – Indiana Department of Environmental Management

ABSTRACT. In 2018, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management conducted a fish community assessment of Turtle Creek Reservoir, Sullivan County, Indiana to determine the impact of a permitted thermal discharge from a nearby coal-fired electrical generating station on the reservoir’s fish population.  Six randomly selected 500 meter near-shore transects were sampled by night-time electrofishing, including just downstream of the discharge point to the reservoir, refugia, and near the dam at the opposite end of the reservoir. The collected data are being used to help further the understanding of the response of these biotic communities to thermal discharges, and to determine if “No Harm” has occurred to the Balanced Indigenous Community due to anthropogenic input of thermal loads.   

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P42) Comparison of Three Age-estimation Methods Using Scales and Otoliths for Bloater (Coregonus hoyi) in Lake Michigan
AUTHORS. Kristy Phillips, Timothy O'Brien, Steve Farha – USGS Great Lakes Science Center

ABSTRACT. Bloater (Coregonus hoyi) are valuable as both a commercial species and endemic prey fish in the upper Great Lakes. Reliable age estimates are critical to population models and sound management of bloater stocks. A reference set of 128 bloater were used to compare scale and sagittal otolith methods with the goals to compare age estimates between structures and to increase precision in age estimates within and among readers. Scales were pressed onto acetate slides and read using a microfiche projector, while sagittal otoliths were thin-sectioned using precision saws. Otolith ages were estimated using microscopy and static, 2D images. There was good agreement between microscopy and static 2D image estimates between and among readers and high variability in the average coefficient of variation (ACV) between and among readers with scale reads. In general, scale ages were estimated to be lower overall when compared to the microscope and image estimates across all readers. Otolith microscope reads using transmitted light had the highest percent agreement among the three readers (65.4%, 54.3%, and 61.4%, 3 reads each). The otolith structure had a lower ACV (range = 4.3 – 7.6%) among the three readers when compared to scales (range = 7.4 – 12.1%). When comparing otolith microscope and 2D image estimates, results varied per reader, however ACV remained under the recommended 10% CV for each reader regardless of otolith structure aging method. These results may be influenced by reader experience, but this study has demonstrated that sagittal otoliths are superior to scales for estimating age of Lake Michigan bloater. To achieve higher precision and agreement within and among readers it is recommended that sagittal otoliths be used to estimate bloater ages.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P43) Effectiveness of Zote Soap Baited Trotlines in Assessing Channel Catfish and Aquatic Turtle Bycatch
AUTHORS. Ryen Kemp, Coty Prunest, Colton McKivitz, Hae Kim, Quinton Phelps – West Virginia University

ABSTRACT. Biologists commonly use Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap as bait in tandem hoop-nets to effectively sample for channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus. Previous studies suggest that Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap is effective in reducing aquatic turtle-bycatch. This is crucial due to the high mortality rate of aquatic turtles as bycatch for both hoop nets and trotlines. However, there are very few studies that have been done to evaluate aquatic turtle bycatch on Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap baited trotlines. Additionally, no studies have evaluated the effectiveness of different colors of Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap to assess catch rates of both channel catfish and aquatic turtle bycatch. Our trotlines will be set overnight, soaking for twenty-four hours, on the Monongahela River. Each line will consist of twenty-five 2/0 sized hooks. Each hook will be baited with a piece of Zote<sup>TM</sup> soap that is approximately the size of a nickel. To eliminate a bias in color, each hook will be randomly assigned a specific Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap color, which will consist of either: pink, white, or blue. Preliminary data suggest that pink Zote<sup>TM </sup>Soap is more efficient and effective than white or blue Zote<sup>TM</sup> soap. Our sampling sites will be determined by randomly selecting areas with large scale river features or macrohabitats (i.e., main channel, inlet, and backwaters) in the Monongahela River. During our study we seek out to determine if sampling with Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap baited trotlines will effectively sample channel catfish populations while also reducing aquatic turtle bycatch and evaluate the catch rates of multiple colors of Zote<sup>TM </sup>soap.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P46) Precision of Age Estimates Obtained from Sectioned and Whole Bluegill Otoliths
AUTHORS. Jeff Koch, Ben Neely, Connor Chance-Ossowski – Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism

ABSTRACT. We estimated age of 257 Bluegills collected from Kansas impoundments using whole and sectioned otoliths.  Three readers independently aged each structure and age estimates were compared to evaluate bias between readers and structures.  In general, agreement between readers was high for both whole and sectioned otoliths.  Between-reader agreement was greater than 92% for all reader comparisons for both preparation techniques and mean coefficient of variation (CV) values were less than 5% for all between reader comparisons.  Exact agreement of whole and sectioned otoliths was 82.8% to 85.2%, depending on reader.  When comparing whole and sectioned otolith ages, significant deviation from the 1:1 line of equivalency on age bias plots was only present for one reader and age combination, which was age 0 and was likely due to inconsistencies in identification of the first annulus.  In general, both preparation techniques for bluegill otoliths yielded precise age estimates.  No trends in between-reader or between-structure bias were evident with increasing purported age.  Due to the additional time and cost of mounting and sectioning Bluegill otoliths, we recommend using whole otoliths to estimate bluegill age up to age 8.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fisheries Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P48) Smallmouth Bass Habitat Use in the Upper Mississippi River
AUTHORS. Colby G. Gainer, Ethan A. Rutledge, Hae H. Kim, Quinton E. Phelps – West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources

ABSTRACT. Smallmouth bass are an economically important sportfish across the United States. Yet smallmouth bass have received little interest in the Upper Mississippi River. Understanding habitat needs of smallmouth bass could lead to improved management practices. Data from the United States Army Corps of Engineer’s Long-Term Resource Management Program was evaluated to assess the smallmouth bass habitat use. From 1993 to 2017, a total of 10,941 smallmouth bass were caught using day electrofishing in pool 4 (Lake City, Minnesota) and pool 8 (LaCrosse Wisconsin). Macrohabitat and mesohabitat use were assessed.  In regard to macrohabitat, main channel borders had the highest catch rates of smallmouth bass; this includes unstructured channel borders and wing dams. Smallmouth bass exhibited intermediate use in side channel borders, while backwaters were infrequently occupied. More specifically smallmouth bass tend to concentrate in areas with large substrate, moderate velocities across a range of depths. Information provided in this project can promote a better understanding of the smallmouth bass habitat use, ultimately enhancing management of the fish.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fishing/Field Surveys

6:00pm EST

(P49) Three-Tier Assessment of Vegetation Communities in Dunkirk Harbor, New York and Presque Isle Bay, Pennsylvania
AUTHORS. Makayla Kelso, US Geological Survey; Nicole King, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center, Patrick Kocovsky, US Geological Survey, Christine Mayer, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center, Song Qian, University of Toledo Lake Erie Center.

ABSTRACT. Submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) supports many important ecological services including critical habitats for a variety of aquatic species and stabilizing shorelines, and act as indicators of water quality in coastal ecosystems. Physical factors such as light penetration and wave energy affect SAV distribution, diversity, and abundance, but biological activity from herbivores may also affect the community. There is concern that invasive herbivores in the Great Lakes, such as Grass Carp and Red Swamp Crayfish, may cause a decline in SAV communities. Data were collected as part of a larger ongoing investigation of SAV communities throughout Lake Erie to establish a baseline of vegetation conditions in all three of the lake’s basins in an effort to track changes in SAV communities. Data collection involved a 3-tier assessment process, which utilized object-based image analysis (OBIA), hydroacoustics, and in situ vegetation collection to assess SAV species composition and relative abundances in Presque Isle Bay, Pennsylvania and Dunkirk Harbor, New York. These two sampling locations were chosen to expand the assessment of SAV into previously un-sampled Central and Eastern Basins, and used the OBIA maps to determine areas of likely SAV coverage. Here we compare the three tiers of methodology to assess the accuracy of OBIA imagery, characterize the SAV communities in these two locations, and to determine areas potentially at risk for invasive species herbivory.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fishing/Field Surveys

6:00pm EST

(P50) Fisheries and Macroinvertebrate Rebound Downstream of Passive AMD Treatment Sites
AUTHORS. Coty Prunest, Quinton Phelps, Melissa O'Neal – West Virginia University

ABSTRACT. Acid mine drainage (AMD) is the cause of rainwater flooding into abandoned mines, absorbing dangerous metals and other acidic materials. Acid mine drainage increases pH and may pose deleterious effects on stream biota. States that relied on coal mining have had major issues with AMD, given loose laws surrounding disposal and storage of waste. West Virginia has suffered major AMD impacts in its streams, and therefore invertebrates and native fishes have been influenced. This project was designed to test the utility of remediation below passive AMD treatment sites. Prior data, while limited, demonstrates that passive AMD treatment sites can be an effective remediation effort. However, a more extensive formal evaluation of these treatment sites are needed. As such, five streams will be sampled (Smooth Rock Lick, Herod’s Run, West Run, Lambert’s Run, and Swamp Run). Sampling will include kick-netting for macroinvertebrates, and backpack electrofishing for fishes. Macroinvertebrates will be identified, and fish will be identified, weighed, and measured in the field. Multiple passes will be sampled in each stream; with equal sampling effort above and below the treatment site. Information gained during this study will provide direct evidence of the utility of passive AMD treatment on macroinvertebrates and fishes in West Virginia.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Fishing/Field Surveys

6:00pm EST

(P51) A Comparative Analysis of Small Tributaries of Green Bay, Wisconsin: The Intersection of Water Quality, Habitat, and Fish Communities
AUTHORS. Amelia McReynolds, Chris Houghton, Patrick Forsythe – University of Wisconsin-Green Bay

ABSTRACT. Small tributaries in the Laurentian Great Lakes serve as important links between their watersheds and nearshore habitats. Lower-order streams process and transport nutrient and sediment inputs from upland areas, and serve as critical spawning and nursery habitat for stream-resident and migratory fish. These traits make them strong candidates for restoration, especially in historically degraded areas such as lower Green Bay, Lake Michigan. Small tributaries across a gradient of land use were monitored over two years of contrasting hydrology. Continuous records of temperature and water stage were paired with water quality sampling from May to October. Fish community and habitat surveys illustrated variation in structure within and between streams. By characterizing water quality and fish communities in these understudied habitats, this study may inform future conservation and restoration actions in the lower Green Bay-Fox River Area of Concern. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P52) Assessing Upstream Fish Migration Patterns Using a Prototype Fish Ladder Around a Low-Head Dam in Northern Indiana
AUTHORS. Cassandra Root, Kevin Pangle – Department of Biology, Central Michigan University; Brian Kynard, Boyd Kynard – B-K Riverfish LLC; Herb Manifold, Jerry Sweeten– Ecosystems Connections Institute LLC

ABSTRACT. Low-head dams inhibit the upstream migration of fish and other aquatic organisms, effectively segmenting riverine fish populations by preventing upstream migration by fish but allowing downstream migration past the dam. In order to reconnect segmented populations and allow natural upstream fish migrations, some low-head dams can be removed, and when this is not possible, an upstream fishway can be installed at the dam. The Stockdale Mill dam, built in 1857 and restored to working condition in 2003, is located on the Eel River near Roann, Indiana. Because the mill has historical designation, the dam will not be removed. To allow fish migration upstream, a one-of-a kind steel fish ladder with multiple side-baffles was designed to allow the ascent of diverse fish species from 2-24 inches. The fish ladder was installed in August 2017. After installation, fish were tagged using passive integrated transponder (PIT) tags at multiple locations within the river. An antenna system was installed to track the movement of PIT-tagged fish that approach the ladder and successfully completes ladder. The fish ladder began operation in November 2017 to allow fish to migrate upstream for the first time in over 150 years. A fish trap was deployed on 1 May 2018 at the upstream exit of the fish ladder and operates for 72 hours each week. Fish as small as 40 millimeters (mm) have been captured with sand shiners (Notropis stramineus) and rosyfaceshiners (Notropis rubellus) being most common. While there is a lack of information on the current migration patterns of riverine Midwest fish species, this prototype fish ladder at Stockdale Mill dam can provide a better understanding of fish migration in Midwest streams, and provide a fishway at mid-west dams for diverse migratory fishes.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P53) Bluegill Habitat Use in the Upper Mississippi River
AUTHORS. Ethan Rutledge, Colby Gainer, Hae Kim, Quinton Phelps – West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources; Melvin Bowler, Iowa Department of Natural Resources;

ABSTRACT. Anthropogenic modifications to the environment have had damaging effects on the wildlife that depend on those natural ecosystems. Specific to Upper Mississippi River fishes, channelization, dams, and loss of floodplain connectivity have all been purported as deleterious. In the face of these habitat modifications, understanding habitat requirements of individual species is needed in order to help guide management and restoration efforts. Furthermore, bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus) are an important indicator species that may provide insight to habitat needs of the broader fish community (e.g., “canary in a coal mine”). Prior research suggests bluegill require a mosaic of habitats throughout all life stages (e.g., main channel to backwater connection). As such, the objective of this study was to identify the habitat needs of bluegill in the Upper Mississippi River. We evaluated bluegill habitat use via electrofishing conducted by the United States Army Corps of Engineers’ Long-Term Resource Monitoring element. Electrofishing events (n=2,000) were conducted at three field sites (Pool 4 in Lake City, MN, Pool 8 in Onalaska, WI, and Pool 13 in Bellevue, IA) throughout the Upper Mississippi River from 1993 to 2017. Our results suggest that bluegill prefer backwater channels with shallow water (0.5-1.5m), low flows (.01-.19m/s), sandy substrates, and areas with woody debris. Management efforts that focus on the preservation of backwater habitat and connectivity to main channel should help to sustain bluegill populations in the Upper Mississippi River. The information garnered in this study can be used to help direct management efforts that not only favor bluegill, but also other members of the Upper Mississippi River fish community.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P54) Characterizing Wisconsin Angler Preferences for Inland Lake Largemouth Bass, Bluegill, and Walleye Fisheries
AUTHORS. Ralph W. Tingley III, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Jonathan Hansen, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources; Dan Isermann, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit; David Fulton, U.S. Geological Survey, Minnesota Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Andrea Musch, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Craig Paukert, U.S. Geological Survey, Missouri Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit

ABSTRACT. Understanding angler preference is central to managing fish populations and can aid in predicting shifts in angler behavior if fisheries change. Species-specific angler surveys fail to incorporate tradeoffs inherent in multi-species fisheries, limiting their application to real-world management. We administered a survey of Wisconsin anglers that included questions requiring anglers to choose between different lake fisheries to better understand angler preferences when considering realistic tradeoffs. We used a site-choice model to quantify the importance of three components of angler preferences associated with bluegill, largemouth bass, and walleye: 1) expectations of catch 2) tradeoffs within species-specific fisheries and 3) species tradeoffs. Next, we conducted a latent class analysis (LCA) to identify and examine differences among previously unobserved angler subgroups. Finally, we assessed the sensitivity of angler choice within subgroups to changes in fishing opportunities, with an emphasis on projected climate-driven changes. Results of the site-choice model indicated that both residents and non-residents prefer “quality” (i.e., moderate catch rate and size-structure) over “action” or “trophy” fisheries, and that characteristics of largemouth bass fisheries are more important to non-residents than residents. Surprisingly, results of the site-choice model and subgroup analysis both indicated that for a large number of anglers (>50%), characteristics of bluegill fisheries are a major driver of where anglers choose to fish. In addition, “what-if” simulations of projected changes in walleye, bass and bluegill fisheries indicate that the maintenance of quality bluegill fisheries is essential to ensuring angler participation, but the retention of high-yield walleye fisheries (i.e., flowages, large-lakes) is also likely important for certain angler subgroups. Our results offer insight into what anglers desire across the lake-rich landscape of Wisconsin and how behavior may shift if fisheries change, which is particularly relevant as lakes experience habitat changes across the upper Midwest of the US.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P55) Distribution and Abundance of Larval Yellow Perch in Lake St. Clair and Adjoining Waters
AUTHORS. Clara Lloyd, Celia Evans – Paul Smith’s College; Robin DeBruyne, University of Toledo; Andrew Briggs, Jan-Michael Hessenauer, Todd Wills – Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Ed Roseman, U.S. Geological Survey Great Lakes Science Center

ABSTRACT. Spatial and temporal dynamics of fish larvae play an important role in determining year-class strength. These dynamics are affected by variation in habitat quality and food resources that influence larval growth, development, and survival rates. Ichthyoplankton surveys conducted during the past decade in the Detroit River revealed a high abundance of larval yellow perch originating from Lake St Clair and drifting through the river to Lake Erie. Genetic and microchemistry analyses showed that these fish make a substantial contribution to the yellow perch stock in western Lake Erie. Our study examines the spatial and temporal distributions of larval yellow perch in Lake St. Clair in order to identify important spawning and nursery areas and other ecological factors influencing their early life history. We employed a lake-wide daytime sampling program using paired bongo nets to sample pelagic larvae beginning in early spring before yellow perch had hatched and continued through mid-summer when larvae were absent from samples. Based on preliminary sample analysis, yellow perch first appeared in samples on 08 May 2018, quickly increased in abundance, and were no longer vulnerable to our sampling gear by the fourth week in July.  Densities were highest at sample sites along the Canadian shore and near the Clinton River outlet.  Spatial overlap and abundance of larvae will be compared with older age-0 and juvenile yellow perch bottom trawl survey data to explore relationships between life stages. Results from this study will reveal important locations for yellow perch spawning and nursery areas in Lake St. Clair and provide insight to ecological interactions that influence year-class formation.     

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P56) Evaluation of Sampling Gears and Population Characteristics of Catfish in the Monongahela River, WV
AUTHORS. Kristen Chestnut, Quinton Phelps – West Virginia University Division of Forestry and Natural Resources; Dustin Smith, David Wellman – West Virginia Division of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT. Angler interest in catfishing has increased in West Virginia, specifically in larger rivers such as the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers. Given the increased interest for catfish, special regulations were recently imposed to enhance and conserve catfish fisheries on the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers. A large tributary to the Ohio River, the Monongahela River, is a popular fishing destination and is targeted by anglers for catfish. However, catfish populations have not been thoroughly evaluated on the Monongahela River, and little is known about the population. The primary objective of our study was to gain knowledge on catfish population characteristics in the Monongahela River to aid in future management of this fishery. Secondarily, we sought to develop long-term sampling protocols for channel and flathead catfish in riverine systems of West Virginia. During 2018, we sampled seasonally using hoopnets, trotlines, and low frequency electrofishing. In total, 382 catfish were collected, in which 307 were channel catfish and 75 were flathead catfish. Length, weight, sex, and age data were obtained from collected individuals. Additionally, sampling will again be conducted seasonally in 2019. Population characteristics (e.g., relative abundance, size structure, age structure, growth, etc.) will be modeled to aid future management decisions and differences in gear success will be evaluated and used to develop sampling protocols. Data collected will be valuable in guiding future monitoring and management of this and other riverine catfish populations in West Virginia.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P57) Movements and Habitat Use of Muskellunge in Green Bay, Lake Michigan
AUTHORS. Robert Sheffer, Daniel Dembkowski – Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Steven Hogler, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Joshua Raabe, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Daniel Isermann, U.S. Geological Survey, Wisconsin Cooperative Fishery Research Unit, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

ABSTRACT. Green Bay and its tributaries support a world-class fishery for trophy muskellunge that attracts anglers from across North America. The Lower Fox River and Green Bay muskellunge population is largely supported by stocking because natural recruitment is limited, possibly due to habitat limitations. While previous work has identified potential spawning locations, it is unknown whether muskellunge hatch at these locations and habitat attributes associated with successful hatching have not been determined. Our objectives are to: 1) determine the proportion of muskellunge spawning in tributaries to lower Green Bay or in Green Bay proper; 2) determine the proportion of adults that return to stocking locations to spawn; 3) determine if muskellunge return to the same spawning locations in consecutive year; 4) define habitat conditions that result in successful hatching and 5) characterize general movement patterns of muskellunge. We will identify spawning sites of tagged muskellunge (N = 60) using radio and acoustic telemetry and conduct spawning habitat surveys. Presence or absence of eggs and larvae at spawning sites will be used to develop predictive maps of suitable habitat throughout the Green Bay ecosystem.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P59) Preliminary Genetic Evidence of Predation on an Imperiled Minnow from an Intentionally Introduced Apex Predator in a Western Ohio Stream
AUTHORS. Kenneth J. Oswald, Ohio Northern University

ABSTRACT. Intentional introductions of non-native fishes into inland waters has been a cornerstone of North American freshwater fisheries management for well over a century. These introductions are often done to satisfy intense demand from recreational angling. Sport fishers tend to value large-bodied species that display aggressive behaviors, two life history characteristics of apex predators. Tonguetied minnow (Exoglossum laurae) is an Endangered species in Ohio where a single population is confined to a ~60 km segment of the Upper Mad River. Approximately 11,500 non-native brown trout (Salmo trutta) are stocked into the Upper Mad River annually to sustain a popular sport fishery. For this study, 27 brown trout were collected from the Upper Mad River. Individuals were euthanized on dry ice and transported to the laboratory where weight and total length were recorded. Total genomic DNA (gDNA) was extracted from the gut contents of each brown trout, and all gDNAs were amplified using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for a portion of the 16S ribosomal RNA (16S rRNA) gene. Next-generation sequencing of 16S rRNA amplicons identified several common fishes of the Upper Mad River. The gut contents of several brown trout also yielded the genetic signature of tonguetied minnow, a result that provides extremely strong support for predation by brown trout. Introductions of brown trout should be halted immediately to preserve Ohio's imperiled population of tonguetied minnow despite the high recreational and financial costs associated with this recommendation.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Freshwater Fish

6:00pm EST

(P60) Structural Differences in Two Techniques for Snag Creation in the Huron-Manistee National Forest
AUTHORS. Madison T. Nadler, Brittany A. Shelton-Dooley – Wittenberg University; Kimberly A. Piccolo, Scott A. Warsen – US Forest Service; Richard S. Phillips, Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT.      Snags have great ecological value because they may have cavities, which provide critical habitat for many animals. In the Huron-Manistee National Forest, snags are created in red pine timber plantations to simulate the number of snags typically found in naturally growing forests. This study compares the value of snags created by topping in 2011 to snags created during a prescribed burn in 2010. GIS/GPS was used to locate and mark snag clumps. Height, DBH, decay class (1-5), and cavity presence was recorded for each clump and compared between and across snag creation type. The burned snags were planted in 1936 or 1938 and the topped snags were planted in 1936 or 1965 but the average DBH of each was similar (burned x¯ = 10.8in; topped x¯ = 10.5in). The presence of cavities below 20ft was compared between burned and topped snags. The average height for burned snags was 42.5ft and topped snags were cut at 20ft, but cavities appeared to be located near the tops of snags regardless of their height. The majority of cavities (83.8%) in topped snags were in decay classes one (59.1%) and two (24.5%). In burned snags, the majority of cavities (87.5%) were in decay classes one (18.8%), two (37.5%) and three (31.3%) with decay classes two and three containing the majority of the cavities (68.8%). Below 20ft, topped snags had a greater percentage of cavities (14.9%) than burned snags (6.7%), although there was a greater percentage of cavities in burned snags overall (burned = 24.8%). Creating snags via topping appears to be worth the investment as wildlife appears to use topped snags as much as snags created in a prescribed burn (topped = 49 cavities; burned = 59 cavities). In the future, studies will also compare snags created during the Meridian wildfire of 2010.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Habitat

6:00pm EST

(P61) Butterfly Response to Barrens Management at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area, Grantsburg, WI
AUTHORS. McKenna Hammons, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. The Northwest Wisconsin Sand Barrens are a unique habitat in decline. Active management is required to maintain this landscape. Butterflies are very responsive to habitat changes. This study aimed to assess the effect of various barrens management strategies on the diversity (i.e. richness and evenness) of the butterfly community at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area, Grantsburg, WI. Butterfly surveys and concurrent vegetation surveys occurred in July and August 2018. Using the Shannon-Weiner diversity index and a Hutchinson t-test I found prescribed fire increased butterfly diversity and richness in the initial years after burn and mowing had no significant effect. These results can be used to guide future management decisions concerning butterfly diversity.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Habitat

6:00pm EST

(P62) Effects of Prescribed Fire on Small Mammal Community of Schmeekle Reserve, Wisconsin
AUTHORS. McKenna Hammons, Benjamin Tjepkes, Paul Schwabenbauer, Andrew Johnson, Cori Semlar, Miguel Cardenas – University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

ABSTRACT. Prescribed fire is a management tool commonly used by wildlife biologists to manipulate the habitat on their properties. Research exploring the short- and long-term effects of fire on vegetation and wildlife have increased our understanding of its importance. Our study aimed to assess the effect of prescribed fire on the diversity (i.e., richness and evenness) of the small mammal community in Schmeeckle Reserve on the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point campus. A prescribed fire was applied to the Berard Oaks subunit in April 2018 and trapping followed in August 2018. Diversity of this site was compared to that of an unburned control site by using the Shannon-Weiner Diversity Index and follow-up Hutcheson t-test. We found the burned area had a significantly higher small mammal diversity than the unburned area. Property managers may use this information to improve their burn prescriptions and their master management plan, especially if maintaining small mammal diversity is a main concern.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Habitat

6:00pm EST

(P63) Water Uptake Capabilities of Sphagnum Moss
AUTHORS. Mattie Osborn, Nikki Shaw, Dr. R. Koch – Bemidji State University

ABSTRACT. Sphagnum moss is well known for its water holding capabilities, in some cases absorbing more than 16 times its dry weight.  Sphagnum is often considered a keystone species, in part because of its ability to absorb and store large amounts of water, prolonging wetland hydroperiods and raising soil saturation levels.  Currently, 33 species of Sphagnum have been identified in Minnesota wetlands.  The purpose of the research was to determine whether water uptake capabilities vary between different species of Sphagnum commonly found in northern Minnesota.  Moss samples were collected from peatlands in Beltrami County, MN.  Samples were identified, then dried at room temperature and divided into approximately 1 g subsamples.  Distilled water was slowly added to the dried samples until saturation was reached.  Due to the similarities in size, habitat, and location of collection, no differences in water uptake capabilities were expected between the two Sphagnum species studied.  Our results, however, indicated distinct variations in the amounts of water absorbed by different moss species.  We found that Sphagnum capillifolium held 34% more water than Sphagnum fallax.  Sphagnum capillifolium had an average uptake of 14.808 mL/g, and that Sphagnum fallax had an average uptake of 11.017 mL/g.  Peatlands dominated by species that store more water are likely to have increased resistance to drying and prolonged hydroperiods.  These results may have implications for selecting Sphagnum moss species in wetland restoration, or, if used in conjunction with climate change models and species distribution maps, to predict peatland loss.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Habitat

6:00pm EST

(P64) Using Citizen Science to Assess the In-stream Response of Watershed Conservation Practices
AUTHORS. Carlos Calderon, Grand Valley State University and the Lower Grand River Organization of Watersheds

ABSTRACT. A long-term, community-based stream monitoring program will be developed for Indian Mill Creek, a 3<sup>rd</sup> order tributary of the Grand River (Kent County, Michigan). This 11,000-acre watershed is designated impaired by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) due to non-attainment of habitat quality and low aquatic faunal diversity. This monitoring program will establish baseline metrics, identify priority sites for restoration, recommend appropriate and effective Best Management Practices (BMPs), and assess effects of restoration practices. Two grant funded programs are currently providing funding to landowners to implement restoration practices. Citizen Scientists will be trained over the course of a year to be familiar with the MDEQ’s Surface Water Assessment Section Procedure 51. This qualitative rapid bioassessment tool will be used to examine the changes in macroinvertebrate communities and habitat qualities. Citizen Scientists from the watershed will continue collecting habitat and biotic data quarterly to assess response of conservation and restoration practices implemented over the course of 5 years.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Human Dimensions

6:00pm EST

(P65) Student Organizations as Professional Development Vehicles for Applied Learning Experiences: The MWSU Student Chapter of the Wildlife Society Example
AUTHORS. Cary D. Chevalier, Department of Biology, Missouri Western State University

ABSTRACT. Every college/university has some student organizations, each addressing an area of interest to some students.  Some focus on support experiences for degree development and some are actually associated with a national or international professional organizations having similar interests and goals.  Student Chapters of The Wildlife Society are among these types.  A constant challenge of any student organization is attracting and retaining active members.  Undergraduates have lots to do in the 4 short years they have to become competitive for the coming job market (whether in the industry, or on to graduate school).  I herein offer some suggestions as to what sets apart an excellent Student Chapter from others.  Student Chapters must have a clear mission and relevant goals.  These must be known and understood by all student members, and their faculty advisor(s).  The Student Chapter must have an involved faculty advisor whose work unit understands and supports his/her efforts.  There must be demonstrable “context” to the students’ professional development (What is in it for me?).  Students must be empowered and encouraged, but guided, to develop and lead their organization.  The Student Chapter should address what I call the “Trilogy Success”: Leadership of development, Skill development, and Professional development.  The Student Chapter must be incorporated in the degree program culture.  I suggest it be considered as a “capstone Applied Learning experience” that begins when the students join, and continues until graduation.  The Student Chapter should have demonstrable context relating to the students’ degree requirements, and reinforce and extend experiences begun in the course environment (lecture and/or lab).  The strategic purpose of a Student Chapter should be to provide Applied Learning through the Trilogy of Success mentioned above outside the traditional classroom format.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Human Dimensions

6:00pm EST

(P66) Investigating Burbot Diets in Lake Michigan Through Stomach Contents, Fatty Acids, and Stable Isotope Ratios
AUTHORS. Benjamin Leonhardt, Purdue University; Benjamin Turschak, Michigan Department of Natural Resources; Austin Happel, Colorado State University; Sergiusz Czesny, University of Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey; Harvey Boostma, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Jacques Rinchard, SUNY-Brockport; Tomas Höök, Purdue University, Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant

ABSTRACT. Over the past twenty years, Lake Michigan has undergone changes in community composition, nutrient dynamics, and system productivity due to reduced nutrient loading and the introduction of invasive species (e.g., round goby, Neogobius melanostomus; zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha; quagga mussel, Dreissena bugensis). There is uncertainty in about how predatory fish in Lake Michigan will adjust their feeding patterns to the observed changes in forage fish abundance. Previous research efforts have primarily focused on the response of salmonids, there has been much less attention given to the piscivorous burbot (Lota lota), a native species of cod found in the cold, offshore regions of Lake Michigan. We investigated burbot feeding patterns in Lake Michigan using diet data from burbot stomachs collected in 2016 and 2017, as well as fatty acid composition and stable isotope ratios of burbot and round goby collected in 2016. Stomach contents revealed that burbot are primarily consuming round goby throughout Lake Michigan, with small contributions from sculpin (deepwater sculpin, Cottus cognatus; slimy sculpin, Myoxocephalus thompsonii), alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), and other fish. Similarities between the spatio-temporal patterns of fatty acid compositions and stable isotope ratios in burbot and round goby suggest long-term feeding on round goby by burbot. Prior to the invasion of dreissenid mussels and round goby in Lake Michigan, burbot were known to have a diverse diet which included alewife, sculpin, bloater (Coregonus hoyi), and stickleback (Gasterosteidae spp.); however, it appears that burbot now consume almost exclusively round goby, which will likely have implications for the connection of nearshore and offshore food webs in Lake Michigan.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(P67) Monitoring Invasive Goby Populations of Lake Michigan Using eDNA Metabarcoding
AUTHORS. Samantha Jurecki, Leslie Dorworth, Meredith Nevers, Muruleedhara Byappanahalli, Scott T. Bates – USGS Lake Michigan Ecological Research Station

ABSTRACT. The round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) is an invasive fish species originating from the Black and Caspian Seas that has significantly impacted the ecology and economics of the Great Lakes region. Improving monitoring methods of the round goby will help in creating more efficient, cost-effective strategies for managing this invasive species. Recently, high-throughput sequencing of environmental DNA (eDNA) has been used to increase detection capabilities of fish species in aquatic systems. Metabarcoding approaches such as these allow for effective relative assessments of the abundances of individual species within a community, and thus are well suited for monitoring invasives. Here we use metabarcoding of eDNA to monitor invasive round goby populations in Lake Michigan. Our study focuses on a newly installed artificial reef at Jeorse Park (East Chicago, IN), examining the influence of these structures in supporting native fish populations over those of the round goby. Water samples for our study were collected at five onshore and offshore locations near the reef at Jeorse Park over the course of the 2018 summer season. In order to validate our methods in freshwater, we also took samples during traditional field monitoring expeditions as well as from indoor freshwater tanks with known communities of fish that are native to the Great Lakes. All samples will be sequenced this fall for analysis using the previously described MiFish/MitoFish bioinformatic pipeline.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(P68) Sensory Development and Navigation in Larval Grass Carp
AUTHORS. Amy E. George, Benjamin H. Stahlschmidt, Cayla L. Carlson – U.S. Geological Survey; Rafael O. Tinoco, Andres F. Prada – University of Illinois; Duane C. Chapman, U.S. Geological Survey

ABSTRACT. Sensory input and systems are critical for organisms to respond to their environment, allowing movement to suitable habitat and potential escape from predators.  While many aspects of grass carp ontogeny have been described, neurosensory development remains unclear.  Previous studies have shown that phototaxis occurs in larval grass carp, which was a basis for the successful deployment of light traps as a collection gear for larval carp.  However, other cues, such as chemotaxis, rheotaxis, and phonotaxis have not been studied for grass carp larvae, and it remains unclear when a response would begin to occur.  Using behavioral tests, we looked at phonotaxis and chemotaxis from initial gas bladder inflation to the development of the second gas bladder chamber (the period where larvae leave the mainstem river and move into nursery areas). Rheotaxis was examined from hatch through gas bladder inflation by quantifying orientation in a laboratory flume.  Grass carp larvae showed no preference for any chemosensory stimulus tested, and auditory stimuli elicited very little reaction except at frequencies above 1000hz and volumes up to 30 decibels higher than ambient noise.  Larvae showed a consistent orientation facing into the flow at most developmental stages, suggesting that rheotaxis may be the earliest developing sense and most critical for navigation. By knowing how and when different sensory systems develop in grass carp larvae, control measures may be developed that attract or deter larvae from specific areas.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(P71) Genetic Analysis and Germination Trials of an Invasive Weed (Gypsophila paniculata) Found in Two Distinct Ecosystems
AUTHORS. Sarah K. Lamar, Charlyn G. Partridge – Grand Valley State University's Annis Water Resources Institute

ABSTRACT. Baby’s breath (Gypsophila paniculata) is an invasive herbaceous perennial that has established throughout much of North America. Within the Michigan coastal dune system the weed effectively outcompetes native plant species adapted to the unique environment and forms monotypes that threaten the federally protected Pitcher’s Thistle (Cirsium pitcheri). Baby’s breath has also established populations in the sage-steppe of central Washington state, a distinct habitat characterized by equally harsh environmental conditions. To understand the invasion success of G. paniculata between these two locations we assessed environmental, genetic, and traits differences associated with plants from these different environments. In the summer of 2018, soil, tissue, and seeds were collected from these two locations. Soil chemistry was analyzed to characterize these two unique environments, microsatellite markers were used to identify genetic similarity among these populations, and a common garden germination study was conducted to examine differences in germination rates.Preliminary results show that despite establishing in geographically and environmentally distinct habitats, as characterized by soil data, G. paniculata populations in both Chelan, Washington and Petoskey, Michigan are more genetically similar than initially expected. These results can be viewed in a larger context by assessing existing herbarium records of G. paniculata to attempt to track its spread across N. America. Germination study results further characterize differences between these two potentially locally-adapted populations. These data can be used for the greater purpose of informing targeted management of this invasive species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invasive Species

6:00pm EST

(P73) Habitat Selection of Michigan Bog Grasshoppers in Huron National Forest
AUTHORS. Brittany A. Shelton-Dooley, Madison T. Nadler – Wittenberg University; Jasmine A. Jones, Kimberly A. Piccolo – U.S. Forest Service; Richard S. Phillips, Wittenberg University

ABSTRACT. The Michigan Bog Grasshopper (Appalachia arcana) is designated as a Regional Forest Service Sensitive Species endemic to the state of Michigan. In 2017, timber was harvested in an area of the Mio Ranger District in Huron National Forest with a documented Michigan Bog Grasshopper population, though the impact of management on this species is currently unknown. In 2018, the grasshopper population on the 54-acre plot was studied to determine the impact of management on habitat use and population dynamics of this species. One vegetation plot was conducted per acre (n=54) using a 1 m<sup>2</sup>quadrat to identify available habitat. Measurements collected include height class, horizontal density, and proximal tree species distance from the center of each plot. In the 54 acre survey area, visual encounter surveys were conducted by slowly walking and placing a flag where a grasshopper was observed. After confirming the species and sex of the grasshopper, coordinates were recorded and a vegetation survey was conducted to identify selected habitat (n=103, 67 males and 36 females). This replicated a 2014 study on the same site in which 51 males and 33 females were counted. Although no estimate was produced, comparison with the 2014 data suggests the population has not experienced a decline and the area of usable habitat may have expanded. Michigan Bog Grasshoppers continue to select areas containing sweet fern and dense blueberry understory along with course woody debris. <a name="_Hlk524978184"></a> Composition of vegetation plots yielded strong selection ratios for sweet fern (?<sub>female</sub>=2.18, ?<sub>male</sub>=2.60), course woody debris (?<sub>female</sub>=2.75, ?<sub>male</sub>=2.40), and blueberry (?<sub>female</sub>=1.83, ?<sub>fmale</sub>=2.1).  Although more study is needed, the results suggest timber harvest may not negatively influence Michigan Bog Grasshopper population numbers or alter habitat selection. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invertebrate

6:00pm EST

(P74) Volunteer Stream Quality Monitoring: Fostering Community Engagement in Ohio’s Scenic Rivers
AUTHORS. Robert Gable, Matthew Smith, Christina Kuchle – Ohio Scenic Rivers Program

ABSTRACT. For over 50 years, the Ohio Scenic Rivers Program has had great success partnering with local communities, landowners, government agencies, conservation organizations, businesses and individuals in the protection of fourteen of the state’s outstanding river ecosystems.  Conservation goals have been achieved through public outreach and education, implementation of innovative conservation measures, enhancing recreational opportunities, and emphasis on the protection of sensitive areas critical to high-quality stream ecosystems.  One of the most important tools to the success of the Scenic Rivers Program has been education and outreach through the Volunteer Stream Quality Monitoring (SQM) Project.  SQM focuses on the basic study of aquatic macroinvertebrate communities in Ohio’s fourteen designated state wild, scenic and recreational rivers to evaluate overall stream health.  Introducing individuals to their first crayfish, mayfly or leech sparks an interest in the stream ecosystem.  Participants become empowered with information and understanding; qualities that drive advocacy and conservation action.  Since the inception of the Volunteer SQM Project in 1983, more than 150,000 individuals and groups have monitored over 150 locations in Ohio’s wild, scenic and recreational rivers.  In 2017 alone, the Scenic Rivers Program had over 7,600 individuals participate state wide creating an integral component to the overall success of the Ohio Scenic Rivers Program.  Sharing the methods behind our success may be valuable to other conservation organizations looking to grow voices for their waterways and support for conservation of high-quality river and stream resources.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invertebrate

6:00pm EST

(P75) Functional Diversity of Macroinvertebrates in Coastal Wetlands Along the St. Marys River
AUTHORS. Zachary Johnson, Ashley Moerke, Mary Markel – Lake Superior State University

ABSTRACT. Great Lakes coastal wetlands are an important ecosystem that is often being altered by human activity. One way to measure the effect disturbances may have on wetlands is by examining functional diversity of aquatic macroinvertebrate assemblages. Over a 7-year period (2011-2017), macroinvertebrate assemblages across 26 wetland sites in the St. Marys River were assessed to determine if macroinvertebrates in wetlands exposed to high wave action exhibited different traits than protected wetlands. Of these 26 sites, 13 were in close proximity and exposed to a dredged freighter shipping channel (exposed sites), and 13 were located away from the channel or otherwise protected by a barrier or embayment (protected sites). We hypothesized that exposed sites would be dominated by macroinvertebrates with disturbance-associated traits whereas barrier sites would possess a composition reflecting more stable environmental conditions. Macroinvertebrates were collected from four vegetation zones, identified following Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands Monitoring Program protocols, and assigned traits (functional mode of existence and voltinism) using the USEPA’s Freshwater Biological Traits Database. Trait composition of macroinvertebrate assemblages in exposed and protected sites varied by vegetation type, with Schoenoplectus zones possessing higher wave action, and Typha and Phragmites zones generally receiving less wave action. In nearly all vegetation zones, mutlivoltinism and disturbance-resistant functional mode of existence was higher in protected than exposed sites, which was counter to our expectations and inconsistent with current ecological theory concerning macroinvertebrate assemblage response to wave action-induced disturbances. Further analyses are needed to understand the drivers of invertebrate trait composition in St Marys River wetlands.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Invertebrate

6:00pm EST

(P76) Toxic Effects of the Biological Pesticide, Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, on North American Frog Larvae
AUTHORS. Eve Choi, Dr. Janet Vigna, Dr. Jennifer Moore – Grand Valley State University

ABSTRACT. The prevalence of mosquito-transmitted diseases has led to the demand for effective treatments to control mosquito populations, and the range of impact for mosquito-transmitted diseases are projected to expand in lieu of global climate change. We investigated the toxic effects that Bti, a biological mosquito larvicide, has on North America frog larvae.  New protocols were developed to study the acute toxicity, genotoxicity (damage to the DNA), and cellular effects of Bti-based pesticides on leopard frog and wood frog tadpole development, using techniques for studying toxicity at the cellular and genetic level. Tadpole mortality was collected to estimate the LC50 (lethal concentration) of Bti. To evaluate genetic damage from sublethal Bti exposure, imaging flow cytometry was conducted on blood samples to determine cell-to-cell variation in DNA content and activity. Additionally, intestinal histology was used to identify cellular abnormalities in the intestine of Bti-treated tadpoles. The results from this study can be used to inform amphibian conservation efforts and to lay the foundation for further studies of Bti's impact in natural aquatic communities.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Other - Biopesticide

6:00pm EST

(P77) Navigation Dams and Larval Fish Dynamics
AUTHORS. Gregory D. King, University of Illinois; Ana M Chará-Serna, Illinois Natural History Survey; Robert E. Colombo, Eastern Illinois University; David H. Wahl, Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT. Navigation dams, such as those on the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers, reduce hydrologic connectivity and alter flow regimes in river systems. Effects on fish community dynamics include interfering with reproductive cues and altering zooplankton community dynamics, an essential food source for larval fishes. However, there is a lack of research on navigation dams, and their effects on fish communities are not clearly understood. Studies simultaneously examining fish spawning and zooplankton communities are critical because phenological changes in either fish or zooplankton have the potential to cause a mismatch between spawning and larval food availability. On the other hand, increased water residence time within dammed rivers may lead to increased zooplankton and be beneficial to larval fishes. To determine if navigation dams have altered the spawning cues of fishes, we compared spawning synchrony between the Illinois (dammed) and Wabash (undammed) Rivers by comparing larval community composition and using occupancy models to determine peak spawning times for individual fish families. These data were then compared to the zooplankton community to determine how spawning time corresponds to food availability. We collected larval fish and zooplankton throughout the spawning season in the Illinois and Wabash Rivers from 2015 – 2018. Larval fish densities peaked in June in both rivers every year, typically around the timing of peak zooplankton abundance. Cyprinids were the most abundant family in the Wabash River, while Clupidae were the most abundant in the Illinois River. Our research will improve our understanding of ecosystem dynamics within these large rivers, and the effects that navigation dams have on them.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P78) Assessment of Thermal Discharge on Downstream Fish and Macroinvertebrate Communities in the Wabash River, Indiana
AUTHORS. Kevin A Gaston, Paul D McMurray, Jr., James R Stahl – Indiana Department of Environmental Management

ABSTRACT. Fish and benthic macroinvertebrate communities in the vicinity of a coal-fired electrical generating station on the Wabash River in Indiana were sampled in 2016 and 2017. A one kilometer reach downstream of the discharge affected by the thermal plume was sampled for fish communities using the travelling (t)-zone method and for macroinvertebrate communities using modified Hester-Dendy artificial substrate samplers; a control site upstream of the discharge was also sampled. Sites were sampled during the peak of the summer season when the river levels were low and the ambient water temperatures were highest. The collected data are being used to help further the understanding of the response of these biotic communities to thermal discharges, and to determine if “No Harm” has occurred to the Balanced Indigenous Community due to anthropogenic input of thermal loads.  

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P79) Assessment of Thermal Discharge on Downstream Fish Community in the White River, Indiana
AUTHORS. Timothy A. Fields, Kevin A. Gaston, James R. Stahl – Indiana Department of Environmental Management

ABSTRACT. The fish community in the vicinity of a coal-fired electrical generating station on the White River in Indiana was sampled during 2017. A one kilometer reach downstream of the discharge affected by the thermal plume was sampled for fish communities using the travelling (t)-zone method; a control site upstream of the discharge was also sampled. Sites were sampled during the peak of the summer season when the river levels were low and the ambient water temperatures were highest. The collected data are being used to help further the understanding of the response of these biotic communities to thermal discharges, and to determine if “No Harm” has occurred to the Balanced Indigenous Community due to anthropogenic input of thermal loads.  

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P80) Summary of a Long Term Study Leading to Population Augmentation for the Endangered Blanding’s Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii) in an Urbanized Landscape
AUTHORS. Crystal Robertson, Paul Yannuzzi, Shannon Ritchie, Andrew Lentini, Bob Johnson – Toronto Zoo’s Adopt-A-Pond Programme

ABSTRACT. It is widely accepted that urbanization negatively impacts freshwater turtle populations. The challenge to sustain viable Species at Risk turtle populations in the changing urban habitat of Toronto has been a focus of study for the Toronto Zoo since 1999.  Snapping Turtle, Northern Map Turtle and Blanding’s Turtle were radio tracked within the Rouge Park to understand population size, home range, and habitat use in an urbanized riverine and wetland system supplemented with manmade and restored habitat features. Characterization of microhabitat, macrohabitat and nesting habitat, both natural and manmade, was also undertaken. A population viability analysis (PVA) was run in 2012 to determine the sustainability of Blanding’s Turtle in the area. Given that only 7 Blanding’s Turtles were observed over 13 years, the PVA verified that the population is functionally extinct. Supplementation of Blanding’s Turtle was recommended to recover this population and began in 2014. It is expected to continue until 2040. Ongoing research into available habitat and survivorship of supplemental hatchlings and juveniles continues to lead to a greater understanding of population augmentation strategies. Continued study of the turtles in this urban habitat will inform recovery planning for restoring and managing turtles in the urbanized landscape.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P81) Paddlefish Movement and Habitat Use Using Acoustic Telemetry in the Upper Mississippi River (Pools 14-19)
AUTHORS. Dominique Turney, Western Illinois University; James Lamer, Western Illinois University; Kevin Irons, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; Kyle Mosel, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

ABSTRACT. The construction of dams on the Upper Mississippi River has disrupted movement of the highly migratory paddlefish. Even though important work using radio-telemetry has provided information on paddlefish dam passage and lateral habitat use, these studies are often limited spatially and were undertaken prior to the establishment of the extensive acoustic receiver array upstream and downstream of each dam on the Mississippi River. Lock and Dam 14 and 15 are infrequently at open river conditions and most fish passage occurs in the lock chamber. To better understand native fish passage in this poorly understood region, we acoustically tagged 121 paddlefish and tracked their movements manually and with stationary receivers upstream and at the approach to each dam. Upstream and downstream passage over Lock and Dam 14 and 15 has been observed by paddlefish. A clear understanding of paddlefish movement and habitat use in the UMR will allow researchers and biologists to better understand dam passage of other fishes and evaluate the impacts of potential invasive species deterrents at these locations.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P82) Recovery of Bigeye Chub (Hybopsis amblops) Populations in Illinois
AUTHORS. Josh Sherwood, Andrew Stites, Jeremy Tiemann, Michael Dreslik – Illinois Natural History Survey

ABSTRACT. Populations of Bigeye Chub (Hybopsis amblops) in Illinois showed drastic declines during the middle of the 20<sup>th</sup> Century. Population declines were so drastic that it was thought to be extirpated from the state in the late 1970’s and 1980’s. Since 2000, Bigeye Chub populations have shown a steady increase in distribution and abundance in east-central Illinois.  Individuals are now commonly collected in four of the seven drainage basins where they once occurred in the state. We analyzed population dynamics and diet preferences of recovered populations in Illinois in order to fill knowledge gaps needed to successfully manage this species. These data, along with models of historical distribution within Illinois, provide the guidance needed to fully recover state Bigeye Chub populations. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(P84) True Metabolizable Energy of Submersed Aquatic Vegetation for Gadwall
AUTHORS. Margaret Gross, Western Illinois University/Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Heath Hagy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University; John Simpson, Winous Point Marsh Conservancy; Sean Jenkins, Western Illinois University; J. Brian Davis, Mississippi State University; Joseph Lancaster, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station; Aaron Yetter, Illinois Natural History Survey - Forbes Biological Station

ABSTRACT. Wetland vegetation communities provide critical foraging habitat for waterfowl, but many of the historical wetlands in the United States have been lost throughout the last two hundred years. The loss of wetlands has led to substantial declines in submersed aquatic vegetation species, which are important foods of waterfowl and other wildlife. Unfortunately, there is a lack of information about the implications of these losses on energetic carrying capacity for waterfowl, especially ducks. Waterfowl managers typically estimate the energetic carrying capacity for a wetland by using bioenergetics models. These models incorporate several parameters that predict energy demand, including population size, stopover duration, and the energetic value (i.e. true metabolizable energy) of foods available to ducks. Of these parameters, energetic carrying capacity models are especially sensitive to true metabolizable energy values, however, very few true metabolizable energy estimates are available for submersed aquatic vegetation. Most available true metabolizable energy values are from plant seeds and have only been estimated for a couple waterfowl species that do not primarily consume aquatic vegetation. I estimated TME<sub>N</sub> (true metabolizable energy corrected for non-dietary nitrogenous compounds) values of six common species of submersed aquatic vegetation for gadwall in order to parameterize energetic carrying capacity models and better understand the value of emergent marshes for ducks. Vegetation species was the most important predictor of true metabolizable values (mean ± SE; kcal/g[dry]) of submersed aquatic vegetation (Myriophyllum spicatum, 0.77 ± 0.32; Elodea Canadensis, 0.70 ± 0.31; Ceratophyllum demersum, 0.55 ± 0.28; Najas guadalupensis, –0.61 ± 0.34; Vallisneria americana, –0.98 ± 0.39; Stuckenia pectinata, –1.07 ± 0.33), but both sex and mass of birds was also influential.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Wetland

6:00pm EST

(P85) Using a Plasma Lipid Metabolite Index to Evaluate Spring Migration Stopover Habitat for Wild Canvasbacks (Aythya valisineria) in Illinois
AUTHORS. Andrew F. Bouton, Western Illinois University; Eric J. Smith, Western Illinois University; Heath M. Hagy, US Fish and Wildlife Service; Michael J. Anteau, US Geological Survey; Randy V. Smith, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; Christopher N. Jacques, Western Illinois University,

ABSTRACT. Wetland loss and degradation in stopover areas can lead to declining food resources, which in turn has implications for migratory waterfowl populations.  The spring condition hypothesis states that migratory stopover areas are vital for acquiring nutrients necessary for nesting and egg production.  Lipid metabolite (i.e., triglyceride [TRIG], beta-hydroxybutyrate [BOHB]) concentrations of blood plasma can provide a useful index of daily mass change in wild birds and can be used to assess forage quality of stopover sites.  We evaluated an index of foraging habitat quality by measuring plasma lipid metabolite levels and daily mass change of wild canvasbacks (Aythya valisineria) held in short-term captivity for feeding (n = 30) and fasting trials (n = 30) on 60 individuals.  We collected two blood samples from each bird (i.e., 0 and 24 hr) and measured metabolite concentrations using established assay procedures.  We tube-fed birds selected for the feeding trial every 4 hours for a 24-hour period and provided only water for fasting birds over the same period.  Respectively, TRIG and BOHB were positively and negatively related to mass change (Results not yet finalized).  Our analysis revealed that sex was not an important predictor of daily mass change.  We used our index to predict changes in lipid reserves of birds collected experimentally from across the Upper Mississippi River and the Illinois River Valleys.  Our analyses indicated that canvasbacks gained weight across the Upper Mississippi River and Illinois River Valley, suggesting that these areas had sufficient forage resources to provide nutrients for canvasbacks during spring migration.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Wetland

6:00pm EST

(P86) Using Plasma-lipid Metabolites to Index Mass Changes in Birds: Are Triglycerides More Indicative of Energy Income Than Deposition?
AUTHORS. Eric Smith, Western Illinois University; Michael Anteau, U.S. Geological Survey; Heath Hagy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT. During spring migration, energy acquisition and storage are important for survival during resource-limited periods, endurance flights, and reproduction. Plasma-lipid metabolites (triglyceride [TRIG], β-hydroxybutyrate [BOHB]) have been used to index changes in lipid reserves over short-time periods, thus have utility for assessing foraging habitat quality at stopover sites. However, such an index may be affected by energetic maintenance costs and further validation under experimental conditions is needed to understand potential sources of variation. We evaluated a previous index using wild lesser scaup (Aythya affinis; hereafter scaup) held in short-term captivity (24 hr) during spring migration through Illinois, USA. β-hydroxybutyrate was negatively associated and TRIG was positively associated with changes in body mass (R<sup>2</sup> = 0.68). Our BOHB slope estimate was nearly identical to one published previously on free-living scaup. However, effects of TRIG differed from free-living scaup and varied by sex, with females having a greater slope. Our results suggest that TRIG is a better measure of energy income than deposition because TRIG slopes appear to be sensitive to energetic maintenance costs. In contrast, BOHB appears to be reliable in predicting negative mass change which is consistent with previous findings. Despite differences in TRIG slopes, our cross-validation process using z-standardized predictions from captive and free-living scaup corresponded well and there was no directional bias (r<sup>2</sup> = 0.79). Sexual differences in apparent lipid deposition rates warrant further research before a generalizable model is advisable for comparing mass change predictions across studies. However, if predictions are standardized it appears this technique is generally robust to variations in energy income vs. deposition. Our evaluation provides verification for the utility of plasma-lipid metabolites as an indicator of short-term mass change and as a potential index of foraging habitat quality.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Wetland

6:00pm EST

(P87) Influence of Spatial Alignment on Photographic Detection Rates at Remotely Triggered Camera Stations
AUTHORS. Edward Davis, Western Illinois University; Tim Swearingen, Western Illinois University; Robert Klaver, U.S. Geological Survey; Charles Anderson, Colorado Parks and Wildlife; Christopher DePerno, North Carolina State University; Jonathan Jenks, South Dakota State University; Robert Bluett, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; Christopher Jacques, Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT. Remotely triggered cameras can provide a cost-effective, non-invasive approach for investigating a variety of natural history and conservation concerns for various species. Trail camera performance is influenced by a wide range of factors, though no studies have rigorously evaluated potential sources of sampling bias (e.g., camera type, relative position) on overexposure (i.e., capturing the flash of one camera by another) events within paired camera station (i.e., 2 camera traps placed perpendicular to animal travel corridors) designs. We evaluated potential effects of camera type (Browning™ Recon Force, Moultrie™ M-880 Series, Reconyx™ HC 600 Hyperfire) and relative camera position (directly aligned vs. offset from one another [i.e., staggered]) on wildlife photographs recorded and overexposure events across 48 camera stations deployed during summer 2017. Total number of wildlife photographs varied by camera model and alignment (model × alignment interaction, F<sub>2,42</sub> = 5.56, P = 0.007); Reconyx and Browning cameras detected more wildlife photographs at aligned camera stations whereas Moultrie cameras detected more wildlife photographs at staggered camera stations. Further, the number of overexposure events varied (F<sub>1,46</sub> = 35.24, P = 0.001) between aligned (mean = 3.56, SE = 0.42, n = 25) and staggered (mean = 0.00, SE = 0.46, n = 23) camera stations. Mean percent overexposure for aligned stations was 5.63 (SE = 1.02, range = 23.91). We documented no overexposure events at staggered camera stations and no difference (F<sub>2,45</sub> = 0.05, P = 0.95) in numbers of exposure events across camera types.  We replicated our study during summer 2018 with 40 camera stations (Browning<sup>TM</sup>, Moultrie<sup>TM</sup>) and will report composite statistics and any yearly effect in our poster presentation.  We recommend that future use of paired camera stations for research, inventory, or monitoring of wildlife consider staggering the placement of cameras to minimize overexposure events of target species.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Wildlife Techniques

6:00pm EST

(P88) Supplementing Traditional Songbird Nest Box Monitoring with Trail and FLIR Camera Technology
AUTHORS. Sayre D. Stejbach, Donald P. Althoff – University of Rio Grande

ABSTRACT. Monitoring songbird nest boxes with visits every 4-7 days is common place.  However, this frequency often does not reveal the onset of incubation, feeding of nestlings, nor apparent fledgling within 1-2 days of occurrence.  As part of long-term monitoring of bluebird/tree swallow productivity in southeast Ohio, we evaluated the use of both trail cameras positioned close to boxes (3-5 meters; 20 of 125 boxes in our network) and a FLIR camera during box inspections to determine egg temperatures without handling the eggs to supplement our standard visit protocol.  Pre-incubation temperatures vs. incubation temperatures were sufficiently different for eastern bluebirds (27C) and tree swallows (24C) eggs to indicate when 3-, 4-, or 5-egg clutches were maxed out.  This information guided our deployment of trail cameras to further document incubation and nestling activity.  We were able to capture via digital images a variety of activity of secondary cavity species. However, we had to review up to 4,000 images for a single camera per day as a result of windy and sometimes fast-moving clouds setting off the motion sensor when no bird was present.  To combat this, we designed a simple, low cost, easily attached tube to the trail camera housing to restrict the field of view of the motion without reducing the visual field of the camera itself nor permanently modifying the unit.  This resulted in 50-95% fewer photos per day per camera without apparent loss of capturing breeding activity of songbirds using the boxes with 3 exceptions. We recommend use of this blinder-type tube to prevent a large number of digital images being recorded to the memory card that have no animal activity to conserve battery life of the trail camera and reduce lab time spent reviewing the digital image data set. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D
  Poster, Wildlife Techniques

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 1) Diet and Growth Rates of the Tubenose Goby (Proterorhinus Semilunaris)
AUTHORS: Bradley Dawson, University of Minnesota Duluth

ABSTRACT: Invasive fish species have caused numerous detrimental effects in the Great Lakes region. Basic life history knowledge of a species is necessary to accurately determine if the species is truly ?invasive?. One species, the tubenose goby (Proterorhinus semilunaris), is thought to have arrived in the Great Lakes in the 1990s via ballast water in trans-oceanic ships. This species has been poorly studied within North America, making it difficult to predict its effects on native ecosystems._x000D_
This study seeks to inform on the potential of the tubenose goby as a true invasive species within the context of the Great Lakes. Growth rates and seasonal diet patterns were examined from a population within the St. Louis River Estuary near Duluth, Minnesota, a tributary to Lake Superior. Growth rates and dietary breadth have ramifications for survival, competitiveness, and dispersal ability of fish species, influencing its potential success as an invasive species. Gobies were sampled from shallow vegetated habitat via a seine net during summer and fall periods. I removed otoliths and aged fish on daily and annual increments for growth modelling; furthermore, stomach contents were identified and weighed to provide measures of fitness and dietary breadth between seasons (fall vs. summer) and between several locations within the estuary. _x000D_
Preliminary results suggest a relatively low dietary breadth that is heavily dependent on Crustacea, regardless of location or season. Developing growth analysis indicates that tubenose gobies may be fast-growing and short-lived, indicating an r-selected life history.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 10) Influence of Round Goby Invasion on Lake Erie Walleye Diets and Growth Rates
AUTHORS: Cory Bauerlien, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: There is limited information regarding the effect that the invasion of Round Goby Neogobius melanostums into Lake Erie had on Walleye Sander vitreus diets and growth. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of Round Goby presence (pre-Round Goby = 1990-1996; post-Round Goby = 1997-2017) on Walleye diet composition and growth rate information. Analysis of variance was used to assess hypotheses regarding the effects of sex, age, habitat use, and temperature on diet selectivity (measured using Jacobs’s selectivity index) and growth parameters within the von Bertalanffy growth model.  While diet selectivity for Round Goby was not found, Walleye consumption of Round Goby was highest in August (p < 0.001), likely as a function of high surface waters (>22°C; p = 0.003) and location nearshore (i.e. ≤10m depth; p < 0.001). Walleye length-at-age, as well as growth coefficients, Linf and K, from fitted von Bertalanffy models, were higher for both male and female Walleye post-Round Goby, especially in younger individuals (ages 1-4).  The results presented demonstrate how aquatic invasive species may have the ability to affect native predator population characteristics. There may be other factors influencing the observed changes in Walleye growth, which should be addressed in future research.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 2) Habitat Preferences of Asian Carp on the Upper Illinois River an Acoustic Telemetry Study
AUTHORS: Jehnsen Lebsock, Western Illinois University; Brent Knights (USGS), Alison Coulter(SIU), Rebecca Neeley(USFWS), Matthew Shanks (USACE) and James Lamer (WIU).

ABSTRACT: Asian Carp are a highly invasive species introduced into the Mississippi River System in the mid 1970?s and now, due to expanding populations, are a pervasive threat to invading the Great Lakes. The Dresden Island, Marseilles, and Starved Rock Asian Carp populations in the upper Illinois River (leading edge) pose the greatest risk to the Great Lakes and therefore understanding their habitat use and behavior in this region are important for removal efforts to limit further expansion. Therefore, the objectives of our study were to use acoustic telemetry to determine habitat preferences and connectivity, and areas of concentration of silver carp, bighead carp, and grass carp at this leading edge of the invasion. We tracked the three Asian carp species from early March until November 2018 using a mobile Vemco VR-100 receiver at pre-defined grid points (0.54 km apart) within the three pools. Ninety-two tagged Asian carp have been detected (53 in Dresden Island Pool, 14 in Marseilles Pool, and 31 in Starved Rock Pool). Data from this study will be used to identify seasonal habitats of Asian carp to increase the efficiency of contracted harvest of potential Great Lake's Asian carp propagules. Continued research will result in a better understanding of the factors influencing Asian carp habitat use and connectivity to help predict these behaviors and target removal efforts. 

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 3) Habitat Use of Larval Fish in Backwater Reaches of the Upper Mississippi River
AUTHORS: Tyler Thomsen, Western Illinois University; Madeline Tomczak, Western Illinois University; Boone La Hood, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fisheries; Kevin Irons, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fisheries; and James Lamer, Illinois River Biological Field Station

ABSTRACT: Since the unintended introduction into the waterways of the southern United States in the 1970?s, Asian Carp have become widely established throughout a majority of the Mississippi River drainage basin. Abundances of Asian Carp have remained low in Pools 17, 18, and 19, due to the structural characteristics of Lock and Dam 19. Adult Asian Carp have been closely monitored, however larval fish communities in these pools have not been well characterized. The objectives of this study were to investigate and describe early life history of Asian Carp, as well as to describe larval fish habitat preference in the Upper Mississippi River. Early stages of Asian Carp require backwater reaches of riverine habitat to grow and develop. Quatrefoil light traps were used to sample for larval fishes from May to September of 2016 and 2017 when main channel water temperatures were above 17?C. To better determine habitat use, twelve light traps were deployed for a minimum of one hour at various locations representing several habitat conditions. The conditions sampled were recorded as woody or vegetation for cover, and open or shoreline for location. Weather conditions were recorded as calm or windy, as well as clear or rainy. Water quality was tested for each light trap location. Larval fish collected were enumerated, measured and identified to family. A total of 1,108 individual light trap samples were collected over the two-year period, representing twelve different families. A majority of the individuals identified were native cyprinid and centrarchids.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 4) Harvest Distribution of Minnesota Produced Wood Ducks
AUTHORS: Ciara McCarty, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: As the second most harvested duck in the state, Wood ducks provide recreational hunting opportunity and funding for conservation through the purchase of hunting licenses. It is important for managers to understand the movement patterns of waterfowl in order to properly manage populations and conserve habitat to maintain a healthy population. There are no formal reports of where birds produced in the state migrate to and no way to test significant factors that drive migration. This project will utilize waterfowl banding data over the last 20 years to help describe some of the connections between production and harvest areas.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 5) Invasive Rusty Crayfish Control on Critical Native Fish Spawning Reefs in Northern Lake Michigan
AUTHORS: Jake Kvistad, Central Michigan University

ABSTRACT: Rusty crayfish is the most widespread invasive crayfish in the Laurentian Great Lakes, where their documented effects include reducing macrophyte cover, displacing native crayfish, and consuming native fish eggs. Their role as egg predators has been implicated as an impediment to the recovery of native fish populations, such as lake trout and many coregonids, which utilize nearshore cobble reefs as spawning habitat. Despite this, an effective control strategy for rusty crayfish in the Great Lakes has not yet been developed. We tested a rusty crayfish control strategy on nearshore cobble reef spawning habitat in Little Traverse Bay, MIWe intensively trapped rusty crayfish off a treatment reef using a combination of standard gee minnow traps and modified pyramid traps prior to fall spawning of native fish and installed a set of physical barriers around the reef to slow crayfish recolonization after removal. A nearby reef was untreated and used as a reference site. Crayfish density was observed before, during, and after treatment at both sites from diver collections using replicate 1 m2 quadrats. Treatment effects on non-target species were also measured at treatment and reference sites, including benthic invertebrate and round goby densities. Egg bags were installed in treatment and reference reef habitat and seeded with eggs to measure the extent to which rusty crayfish removal on the treatment reef reduced predation pressure on native fish eggs. If successful, our strategy may be applicable for crayfish control in other Great Lakes reef habitats impacted by invasive crayfish.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 6) Predicting Seasonal Growth of Yellow Perch in the Western Basin of Lake Erie
AUTHORS: Peter Jenkins, The Ohio State University

ABSTRACT: Lake Erie management agencies estimate Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens) recruitment to the fishery (age-2) in part using the relative abundance of age-1 fish from the Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODW) western basin trawl survey in August. Currently, the ODW uses prespecified length classifications to classify the ?age? of 0, 1, and 2+ yellow perch on the boat. High variability in length at age between cohorts emphasizes the need for a more fluid length classification. The studies objective is to use seasonal growth data and environmental factors to help inform age-1 length classifications, thus increasing the accuracy of age-1 relative abundance estimates and reducing bias in recruitment estimates. Using pooled ODW monthly trawl data we compared a traditional von Bertalanffy growth model and Somers? and Pauly?s seasonal growth models using minimum AIC to determine the best fit model. Pauly?s model was determined to be the best and subsequent models were fit for each cohort from 2007 to 2015. There was high variability in model parameter estimates between cohorts so further analysis of biotic and abiotic factors were examined. we used the growth factor K? and correlated that to cumulative growing degree days, total fish density, young of the year yellow perch density, and mean zooplankton length. Only the growth factor K? and total fish density had a significantly positive relationship. We plan to translate this analysis into a hierarchical model to help improve our ability to predict length of August age-1 Yellow Perch in the western basin of Lake Erie.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 7) Size Selectivity of Gill Nets Used to Target Silver and Bighead Carp in the Upper Mississippi
AUTHORS: Zachary Witzel, Western Illinois University; Kevin Irons, Illinois Department of Natural Resources; James Lamer, Illinois River Biological Station, Illinois Natural History Survey, and Western Illinois University

ABSTRACT: Bigheaded carp (bighead carp and silver carp) are highly invasive fishes in the Mississippi River System and can be detrimental to native fishes and ecosystems. To limit their impact and further expansion, fishermen have been contracted through state and federal agencies to remove bigheaded carp using predominantly gill nets. Mesh size of entanglement gears determines the size structure of fishes able to be captured. To increase efficiency and effectiveness of bigheaded carp harvest and minimize the capture of bycatch, it is important to understand the relationship of gill net mesh size with the size structure of persistent populations. Therefore, the objective of our study is to determine the size of bigheaded carp and commonly encountered bycatch that are effectively caught in different sized gill nets based on their size (bar size = 7.62, 8.89, 10.16, 10.8, 11.43, 12.7, 13.335, and 15.24 cm). Gill nets were used in pools 16 through 20 on the Mississippi River to capture silver carp (n=445) and bighead carp (n=72). Multiple areas were targeted for their capture including backwater, and main channel areas of bigheaded carp. With this information managers will be able to more efficiently target bigheaded carp if knowledge of population size structure is available.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 8) The Seasonal Migration of Round Goby in Lake Michigan near Milwaukee, Wisconsin
AUTHORS: Erik Carlson, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

ABSTRACT: The offshore migration habits of the invasive Round Goby (Neogobius melanostomus) in Great Lakes is based on anecdotal information. When Round Goby move offshore, they have the potential to become prey items for fishes like Lake Trout, Burbot, and Brown Trout. Due to the Round Goby?s preference for rocky habitat, it is difficult to sample using traditional methods, such as trawls. To better understand this movement, and the factors that drive it, a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) equipped with a tracking system was used to observe the number of fish along transects, and to collect specimens for diet and aging purposes. In this study, six ROV transects per site were taken at depths of 10 meters to 40 meters in 10 meter increments. Initial observations showed more goby nearshore (10 m site) in September (1.71 fish per transect meter) and decreasing to 0.15 fish per meter, while at 30 m abundance increased from 0.03 fish per meter to 0.41 fish per meter by the end of October. A 2-Factor ANOVA, with depth and time of year as the two factors, showed significant results for the interaction between depth and time of year. The main factors are not interpretable when the interaction is significant. Additional transects will be conducted in spring to observe the return of Round Goby back to nearshore habitat.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D

6:00pm EST

(STUDENT RESEARCH POSTER 9) Using Geographic Data from Angler Apps to Map Aquatic Connectivity from Angler Movement as a Vector of Invasive Species
AUTHORS: Jessica Weir, Ball State University

ABSTRACT: Some of the largest threats to diversity include overexploitation and aquatic invasive species (AIS) spread. Recreational fishing and boating are vectors of AIS, and management is often concerned with minimizing the risks associated with angler movement across the aquatic landscape. While data collection and mitigation projects for management and conservation often involve expensive specialized equipment, multiple man-hours, and proper training for the individuals carrying out the work, there exist more economic modes of passive data collection. Smartphones, utilized by millions worldwide, come standard with data-gathering tools including GPS and high-resolution digital cameras. This hardware, paired with broad network coverage, creates an exciting opportunity for sharable, mobile measurement of fisheries data. Fishbrain is a privately-owned smartphone application that is available for free worldwide, generating an extensive local, national, and international network of recreational anglers. The app users connect with each other and voluntarily share angling information about their fish catches. Data stored and freely shared with scientific research partners include: species identification, size, geographic location, and fishing method. In this study, we will utilize the geographic information to assess the fine-scale movement of recreational anglers. More particularly, we are mapping the movement of anglers as a network of aquatic connectivity across the United States and Canada to compare to current distributions of AIS. The next phase of this study will compare the angler connectivity network to the existing hydrologic connectivity network as vectors of AIS spread.

Tuesday January 29, 2019 6:00pm - 9:00pm EST
SUPERIOR BALLROOM C/D